As Labor Day passes, we’re beginning the third week of the school year in Iowa City and really starting to roll towards 2018. While this time of year is always ridiculously busy for the Technology & Innovation office – it’s not uncommon in our district and others to see support requests come in at five to six times the normal rate during the first month or so of the school year – this year has been our craziest yet. Continue reading Progress is Messy!
To support our secondary 1:1 Chromebook initiative, the Iowa City Schools have launched our Citrix virtual application service, which allows students and teachers to run Windows software on a Chromebook.
On August 23rd, ICCSD began issuing 1:1 Chromebooks (laptops with Chrome OS) to each student in our high schools. As we get started with this program, please check out our 1:1 Information page, which includes a program overview, policies, content filtering information, privacy information, and other useful information for students, parents/guardians, and teachers.
Between the craziness of the end of the school year and a week with my four-year-old between the end of preschool and the start of day camp, I haven’t managed to post for a while. I have much more coming, but here’s a quick update of what’s happening in the ICCSD technology & innovation department this summer.
New Building Deployments
One of our big projects for the summer is preparation for the Fall, 2017 openings of Liberty High School and the new Hoover Elementary School. These projects are coming along – Liberty in particular looks close to completion – and we’ve been working to make sure that the technology is set to go in both buildings. The wired network is basically complete at Liberty, and wireless access points will go up soon throughout the building. Continue reading Summer Technology Update
There are few things that I find more draining than professional conferences. Not long ago, in a discussion with a friend of mine who is also in the ed tech field, I mused that I’m more exhausted after a day full of conference sessions, networking, and lectures than I am after a day spent shoveling landscape rock. While the latter is definitely harder work, I’m pretty convinced that the former is more exhausting. As this year’s Consortium for School Networking (CoSN) conference wraps up in Chicago, this belief has been reinforced. Continue reading CoSN Conference Update
As we seek to expand the technology tools and infrastructure available to our students and teachers, we must also cope with one of the key realities of this investment: technology is expensive. On one hand, of course, the cost of technology has consistently declined over the past three decades; the word processors of the 1980s frequently cost more than $2,000, for instance. The drop in technology prices has been closely tied to the increasing ubiquity of and reliance on technology within our schools and society at large; in other words, while prices may be dropping, the amount of technology that must be purchased continues to increase. Continue reading Maximizing our Financial Resources
Think you’re having a better spring break than me? Think again! While the ICCSD offices are closed today and tomorrow, I get to attend the Iowa Technology & Education Connection IT Conference, a great opportunity to learn about topics related primarily to the operational side of our department, as well as to connect with and learn from peers around the state. Continue reading Spring Break! Time for a technology conference …
I’ve been writing a great deal about the cool, new technologies that we’re deploying – our secondary 1:1 program, device infusion at the elementary level, our new classroom suite that includes wireless video and voice amplification, dramatic network infrastructure improvements, virtual applications, and staff device upgrades, to name a few – but am going to devote some time today to a device type that will be phased out within our classrooms. Continue reading What about hub computers?
One of the challenges of planning substantial technology deployment changes within a large district like ours is tied to the interactions between those various policies. One of the major changes that we’re making, beginning next year, is to shorten the district’s technology replacement cycle from 6 years to 4 years. Additionally, our current model calls for the replacement of 1/3 of technology within each building, every other year. Continue reading In-Depth: Staff Device Replacement Plan and FAQ
On February 14th, the ICCSD Board approved a purchase of hardware and software that will provide, among other things, application virtualization services. Now, on the face of it this might not sound like an interesting development, but I’m really excited about the opportunities that this will afford our students – and staff – to embrace the concept of anywhere, anytime learning. Continue reading In-Depth: Application Virtualization and 1:1 Program Cost