N.C. District Manages 5000 Laptops Efficiently - Tech Learning

N.C. District Manages 5000 Laptops Efficiently

Winning the titles of “Apple’s Distinctive District” and “1:1 Showcase Site,” Mooresville attracts thousands of educators and administrators each year, hoping to discover the secrets of Mooresville’s technological success and integrate them into their own districts.
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When Dr. Mark Edwards stepped into his position as Superintendent of Mooresville G.S.D. in North Carolina, academic performance and graduation rates were at 65%. Five years after initiating his “Digital Conversion,” Mooresville is Apple’s Distinguished District and has risen from 38th to 3rd on North Carolina’s list of schools of distinction. Composite test scores have risen 21% and the dropout rate has fallen 54%. 

To implement Mooresville’s digital conversion, the school district invested in a laptop computer for every student and staff, which resulted in an initial order of over 5000 computers. The new learning environment allowed the educational focus to be on personalized and project-based learning, using all digital resources. In order to keep their vision on track, Dr. Edwards and his Chief Technology Officer, Dr. Scott Smith, realized they needed an way to managing 5000 computers, along with all of their software, applications and files. They found their solution in FileWave.

“Through FileWave, we’re able to reach out and touch 5000 machines at one time. That’s a huge cost-savings in terms of IT and total cost of ownership and what is going on technically in our department," said Dr. Edwards. “Previously, when we had issues and had to pull files back in, just the entire time-intensive, labor-intensive process...now we have the means, the capacity, the efficiency and the precision with FileWave to reach every student, every teacher’s laptop in immediate fashion.”

The time efficiencies has allowed their IT department to initiate projects like the student-run help desk, where students use elective class credits to troubleshoot and repair computer problems for teachers and their peers. The teachers view these students as “experts” and often utilize their services in class.

Currently, Mooresville distributes the MacBook Air as the model laptop to their third grade through high school students. They use iPads with their Specialized Learning population and their K-2 students. The tablet’s versatility help visually and auditory-impaired students keep up with their peers through the use of enlarged screens and text-to-speech programs. The touchscreens enable tactile learners. The functionality of early math and reading apps on the iPad have been a huge hit with K-2 students, helping them adapt to learning new skills. Encouraged by these initial successes, Dr. Smith is enthusiastic about incorporating Mobile Device Management solution into Mooresville’s agenda for future growth.

“When we look at the Digital Conversion and the means to bring efficiency to operations, that’s the personification of FileWave. When you think about the manpower, the hours, the planning that it takes to retrieve machines manually, rather than to be able to push out software and, in an instant, click. So the efficiency, the precision and ultimately, the effectiveness of FileWave - it’s huge.”

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