Back Office Business
Time for a telecomm upgrade in Alabama
Challenge: Like many other districts, Madison County School System
(MCSS) in Huntsville, Alabama, was challenged with finding an
affordable advanced communications infrastructure so that it could
increase the communications capabilities for its central facilities and schools.
Solution: For Madison County, the choice was ADTRAN’s NetVanta Unified Communications
solution. During the first phase of deployment, MCSS will offer unified messaging for administrators
and teachers, a Find-me/Follow-me feature for superintendents and administrators, a conference
server to host system-wide school official calls, and overhead and handset paging integrated into existing
systems at each campus. Later, MCSS will implement capabilities that will simplify data collection and
distribution, reduce human error, and mitigate liability with real-time parent communications.
Interactive whiteboards for
Challenge: Winslow Township (NJ) School District wanted to add
more technology to its elementary schools so that teachers could
integrate more technology into their lessons.
Solution: This summer, more than 100 MimioBoard devices
were installed in elementary schools. The MimioBoard is a fixed
installation, but its interactive whiteboard (IWB) component—the
MimioTeach bar—can be detached from the whiteboard and transferred to other classrooms, to turn
any whiteboard into an interactive whiteboard. “No other product that we piloted offered the full
package of affordability and ease of use,” says Darryl Scott, supervisor of educational technology.
Utah expands 1:1 program throughout state
Challenge: The Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) wanted to continue
deploying whole-school technology in its public schools, so the office had to decide whether or not to
expand its Smart School Technology Pilot Program. This program provides 1:1 tablet deployment on
any platform, security wherever the tablet is used, access even when wireless and Internet may not be
available, and software that integrates testing, assignments, learning management systems, analytics,
instant messaging, textbooks, and collaboration.
Solution: The GOED selected iSchool Campus to continue deploying whole-school technology in
Utah’s public schools. “One of Utah’s four key objectives in economic development
is ‘to prioritize education to develop the workforce of the future’ and the Smart
School program is an important element in achieving success,” says Spencer Eccles,
GOED executive director. Since his initial pilot program deployment last December,
the principal of Dixon Middle School in Provo reported increases in both student
engagement and achievement.
Affordable PD comes to Texas
Independent School District
(ISD)—a large, rural district
in Odessa, Texas—needed
to find an affordable way to deliver professional
development to its staff members at 40 different
campuses spread across 906 square miles.
Solution: The district found SAFARI Montage
Live-5! (SML5), an interactive videoconferencing tool
that allows teachers to receive face-to-face training
affordably. Using SML5, instructional services gives
teachers a week of technology PD every summer.
Teachers can attend sessions from home or school at
their convenience. “After reviewing other products,
SML5 stood out as the most cost-effective solution for
our PD needs, with the added benefits of the Learning
Object Repository and video content,” says Damon
Jackson, CTO of Ector County ISD.
Teacher evaluation + PD is the
right choice for Butler County
Challenge: In its effort to improve teaching
effectiveness, the Butler
County (AL) School
District explored various technology solutions.
Administrators wanted one that used video as part of its
professional development process.
Solution: The district is implementing Teachscape’s
Effectiveness Platform in a multi-phased approach for its
teacher evaluation and professional learning initiatives.
Teachscape and Charlotte Danielson’s Framework for
Teaching will assist the district in conducting its ongoing
observation, coaching, and self-assessment processes.
“Teachscape’s tools will streamline our evaluation
process,” says Litta Norris, a program director for the
district. “From observer training and assessment to
observations tied to professional development, our
administrators and teachers will be able to easily manage
this process online.”