Along with many other school districts in Iowa, the Iowa City Community School District is working through a challenging budget situation for the coming fiscal year. After years of identifying opportunities for increased fiscal efficiency, there are few ways to further reduce costs without impacting service delivery and – ultimately – the classroom environment available to our children.
While I won’t address the District’s comprehensive efforts to address these challenges in this post, I do want to highlight some of the efforts we’ve made in the Office of Technology & Innovation. The past several years have been marked by significant technology-focused initiatives, including those focused on device availability and infrastructure, as well as initiatives such as our IDS Innovation team’s focus on instructional technology integration.
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→
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→
With temperatures in the 50s this past weekend, it finally seems as though spring is in sight. While day-to-day technology support needs in the district tend to hit a bit of a lull at this time of year – many chronic issues have been solved, and most new technology initiatives and programs are well-established – this is a busy time of year from a planning perspective. Continue reading What’s New in the Technology & Innovation Department: E-Rate→