Wireless, Classroom Computers, Training, Office, Personal Devices: Questions and Answers
Thank you for the great feedback on the survey. We read every comment! These are some common comments with the information you’ve requested.
Would like better WIFI access in classrooms. I can only get it in the hallway.
We’re getting district-wide WIFI! 🙂
The 2011 bond program includes district-wide wireless. The first phase of this project, installation of wireless at the high schools, is scheduled for completion by August 1, 2012.
It would be nice to have access to computers in the classroom for the students.
Space, furniture, electricity, and network drops in classrooms can accommodate approximately three desktops per room. This isn’t enough for a class of students to share, and teachers report that it’s difficult to design meaningful lessons that involve them. Many districts have discontinued the practice of deploying stations of 2-3 student computers in classrooms for that reason.
A higher priority in MISD has been replacing lab and teacher computers, because they receive the most frequent use.
The district used cost savings from a series of major cabling projects to re-purpose (clean, add memory, upgrade software, and deliver) computers that had been pulled from labs and teachers’ desks. Because the 2009-2010 replacement cycle was (according to an external audit) several years overdue, the computers re-purposed for use on some campuses were already well past their prime. Some campuses had few or none that could be re-purposed. Some have more student computers because of campus investments or parent groups. The goal had been 1-3 per room, but more deployments will probably follow the next replacement cycle.
We hear that these computers are used most frequently for centers, reading programs, and some typing.
We’re also hearing that devices like the iPad and iTouch would be preferable to classroom computers. What do you think?
This computer doesn’t have Office! How can I get it?
Office can be installed on a district computer as part of our annual licensing agreement with Microsoft. If you have a computer that needs it, please key a work order or call the Help Desk. If there are several, please put in a work order at http://eduphoria.mansfieldisd.org.
The most recent version of Office that the computer will run will be installed.
I’d like to see students allowed to use their personal smartphones in class for academic assignments.
We’re working on changes to the handbook and upgrades to the infrastructure that will accommodate this. Stay tuned!
I got my Extreme Makeover equipment just recently and haven’t gotten any training. What can I do?
We’re in the process of setting up training for groups such as ELL teachers who recently received equipment. More advanced classes are available at http://edtech.mansfieldisd.org.