Tech History

The Year in Review: 
Highlights of the 2012 School Year

We made significant progress in our advancement of technology in the Manchester School District.   Some of the highlights include:

Successful Pilot of district wide Google Apps for Education(GAFE)
We successfully rolled out GAFE within the district, and identified key strategies for utilizing its collaborative capabilities including: student portfolios, project based collaboration, and shared communication.  We have integrated it to our Student Information System so all students and staff will automatically be assigned a GAFE account based on their enrollment status.  We look forward to continuing to evolve this platform to enhance student learning beyond the classroom walls.

Revision of our Internet Responsible Use Policy
We changed the focus of our AUP from "Opt-IN" to "Opt-out" and renamed our policy from Acceptable to Responsible Use Policy to reflect a more appropriate focus for 21st century classroom.   Now students will have to sign the policy only once, and will automatically be granted access to technology until "opting out" rather than resubmitting the RUP every year.  This will facilitate much easier access to technology for all students within the classroom.

Redeployment of our District Website to Google Sites.
The Google Sites platform brings content editing to all staff and will enable the district to become more collegiate internally as well as externally to the public who is served by our school system.   This platform supports our Technology Leadership Framework vision.  Communication and collaboration are key elements to a 21st century workforce and we want our district to facilitate this style of connected shared learning.  This transformation will enable better collaboration between our school district staff and the families they serve as well as save the district approximately $12,000 per year since Google Apps for Education platform is completely free to schools.

Migration of District email to a hosted provider.
Our district Email has been transitioned to hosting provider.   Hosted email costs are eligible under the federal ERate program.   These transitions will enable approx $18,000 to become ERate eligible annually.

Dedicated Internet Access to every school.
Through the federal ERate program, we initiated the process of outfitting each school with dedicated high speed internet access.   These connections will provide the bandwidth necessary to allowing collaborative 21st century tools to become integrated into the classroom learning environment.   Dedicated access also provides the district the granularity of content control needed to maintain a safe learning environment and to meet federal compliance standards of CIPA(Child Internet Protection Act).  Having this granularity means that we can now provide age appropriate access tailored to each individual school.

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 Goals for 2013

Continue discussion on Social Media and Web Tools Policy
  • Facilitate the adoption of 21st century learning by embedding digital stewardship across the curriculum.

Continue discussion on 1 to 1 and Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Policies
  • Debate lessons learned from other districts.
  • Encourage community discussion.
  • Begin discussion around the potential strategies and costs in context of strategic district curriculum planning.
  • Begin discussion around the option of replacing paper based textbooks with electronic learning content.

Evaluation of a district wide Learning Management System (LMS)
  • Case study MSTHS to document what elements of transformed learning can be applied district wide.

Upgrade of our Infrastructure based on established priorities.
  • Deploy teacher refresh, wired and wireless upgrade as well as identify lab environments and libraries needing improvement.

Enhancement of district wide technology literacy standards.
  • Through the development of school based tech teams consisting of staff and student tech leaders, accelerate 21st century learning adoption.  Empower students to participate in the transformation of their learning environments by allowing more student voice and ownership utilizing student help desks and student technology planning committees. 

Provide extended learning opportunities including Virtual Learning Academy Charter School (VLACS) and Skype based instruction.
  • Deploy innovative online learning to enhance classroom instruction.
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