Start of School Technology Support Summary

“Your team must be quite busy” is a phrase I hear often from teachers and staff during the first week or so of school.  I generally agree, adding that all district employees are busy at the start of the school year, wanting everything to be just right when the students arrive.  Now that school is fully underway, I thought I’d share out some of what the last three weeks has looked like in the Technology and Innovation department.

During the first week of school, it was “all hands on deck” to put hardware back together at BHS and JFK.  The schedule was tight, and our team was often entering a section of the buildings just as the construction workers and custodial staff were finishing the work they needed to do.  The buildings were largely unavailable prior to the first day the teachers came back, but all groups worked together to get the work done.  Our goal for the summer was to visit each desktop computer and leave a completed checklist of updates and services done to the computer and peripherals, and to reach that goal the team worked extra hours, including one team member who came in on Saturday and Sunday.  In the end, the goal was met and every desktop in the district was visited and tagged for serviceability, providing a visual cue to our end users that their computers were prepared and ready for the start of school.

Much of the second week (the first full week the teachers were back) consisted of :

    • Printer re-configurations and deployments
    • Phone & voicemail setup and resets
    • Key fob deployments / reassignments
    • Mac lab disbanding (old Macs)
    • Mac lab installation and configuration of new Macs
    • Failed hardware replacements (Projectors, desktops, Chromebooks)
    • Application deployments
    • Chromebook deployments
    • Network drop repairs
    • Email reconfiguration of network devices

In this third week, the team is focusing on :

    • iPad re-imaging
    • Failed hardware replacements (Projectors, Smart boards)
    • Mac lab software installations and configuration
    • Project Lead the Way laptop configurations and imaging
    • Hardware relocation and removals

As a result of team efforts across the district, we’ve had the smoothest opening of school in many years, despite the challenges of working around competing and conflicting schedules with construction and custodial projects.  At this point, our key area of concern is failing projectors and SMART Boards.  We have re-allocated resources and have ordered several projectors and LCD signage (replaces SMART Boards) as a stop-gap measure until the Smart Schools Investment Plan (SSIP) is approved.

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