As K12 schools plan for classes this fall — online, in classrooms, or a hybrid of both — those that opt for some form of in-person instruction will need to deliver it safely. In order to do that, schools will need to follow health guidelines and communicate information effectively and clearly through signage and other techniques often found in wayfinding strategies. Here are some ideas to get you thinking!
During the best of times, display technology in the form of digital signage, video display kiosks and interactive wayfinding systems is critical to informing and engaging people as they navigate public and private spaces. However, it takes on a whole new level of importance now as colleges across the country prepare to operate safely during the pandemic. Visual communication is consistent and reinforcing itself. On a college campus, continual visual messaging supported by creative, compelling digital content plays an important role in promoting healthy habits. The habits that your college’s strategy encourages will serve you well even after the COVID-10 pandemic subsides. At a time when situations are evolving at a rapid pace and accurate information is critical, digital signage, which can be changed at a moment’s notice, is ideal and gives college administration the tools they need to keep students and staff informed.
Providers of technology have begun to develop an entirely new category of turnkey digital health safety protocol solutions that combine video displays with software, sensors and more. But they are not necessarily one-trick ponies. At their core, these solutions include the kind of digital signage technology that supports visual communication in retail, hospitality, corporate and — increasingly — education applications. So, after helping colleges confront the challenges posed by the pandemic, these health safety protocol solutions can be redeployed for other ongoing communication initiatives, from mass security notifications to information about school events.
Many colleges are opting for kiosks to keep their staff and students informed on campus. New all-in-one “wellness kiosks” are easy to setup at strategic entry points and don’t require staff to constantly monitor their operation. They feature a vertical orientation with a built-in operating system for processing and presenting information, as well as an integrated thermal scanner for quickly and accurately taking people’s temperature!
For obvious reasons, this is a very attractive option for many colleges. Many already have digital signage displays mounted throughout their facilities for messages, sports highlights, event schedules, and more. Clearly, existing signage can be repurposed to communicate important health information as universities reopen. But more visual communication may be needed, especially in locations not currently served by existing digital signage. Mobile, reconfigurable health protocol signage solutions allow schools to position their messages in high-traffic locations and then move them as necessary.
Ultimately, many of the features and functions of health protocol display solutions will have a useful life well beyond the current public health challenge. Colleges that already have robust digital signage programs can easily see the value of added visual communication in reopening during the pandemic. And those just starting out can quickly adopt new health protocol solutions today and use them as the foundation of future digital signage applications. Technology companies have been recommitting their expertise to helping educational institutions operate safely. What’s your campus strategy? Let us know!
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