Monday, February 22, 2016

BVSD Technology Tools Program

IMG_0069.JPGIt is no surprise that changes in technology are happening all around us. My team now supports over 27,000 digital devices which is up almost 300% from just 5 years ago. Chromebooks, which entered the market only a few years ago, are now a classroom technology standard. This is evident by the 12,500+ Chromebooks already deployed in our schools.

In addition, new repair costs for aging projectors and wall-mounted touchpads are now covered in our existing budget. As technology and cost models change, the IT and Ed Tech programs must also adapt to be relevant in the learning environment.

The BVSD Technology Tools Program is the evolution of the long-running “Tech Refresh” program which allocated roughly $1.4M to refresh technology for schools, students, teachers and support staff.

IMG_4960.JPGThe new Technology Tools Program breaks up the funding into three distinct sub programs - Schools, Employees, and Purchases.

School/Student Technology Tools: Allows schools to get new technology on a recurring basis.

Employee Technology Tools: Allows employees to have a digital device not older than 5 years.

Purchase Technology Tools:  Allows schools and departments to purchase supported technology using their own funds.

What has changed?
  • Schools will no longer be allocated points to be used to purchase standard equipment for staff members. Instead employees will be able to replace their digital device every 5 years with the latest preferred technology.
  • Principals can select alternative technology for teachers depending on instructional needs using school/student point allocations.
  • IT will warrantee employee devices for 5 years.
  • Projector, bulb, and touchpad repairs will be maintained by IT at no additional cost to schools.

What has not changed?
Mrs. Litchy's Classroom 10.14.15#19.JPGSchools are still divided into two groups: Odd-Year Schools and Even-Year Schools. Click here to view your school’s group. The only exceptions to this schedule are the 1:Web pilot schools, which are receiving new technology every year for incoming freshman.

For more information, check out the newly redesigned Technology Tools  website here.

Do you have questions or comments about the new BVSD Technology Tools model?  Please sign in to chime in below.



  1. The plan looks good to me at first sight. I have a few questions so I can understand the big picture:

    Besides looking at the bottom line, what processes did you use to come up with the plan?

    Is the $1.3 million an annual accrual?

    How much of the 1.3 million does IT anticipate having to hold back to service projectors, bulbs, and touch pads?

    How will IT allocate any budget variance from these funds?

    Did IT get access to any funds from the lease of fiber, or was that money dropped into the general fund?


    1. David, Great questions, thanks for asking. We used an equity model around employee devices to ensure ALL employees have technology that is no older than 5 years. As an example, prior to this model, the age and type of a teacher's device varied across the district. Once we had the base model it was vetted with Cabinet, Tech Contacts from each school, and the Principals. This was all done prior to my blog going out. The funding comes into IT on an annual basis. Since approximately 1/2 the schools get tech funding every other year, we pool the money to ensure over two years the program is equitable. The funding from leasing air in our fiber conduit was used to run the 1:Web pilot and covered some of the cost of the wireless upgrades across the district.

  2. HI Andrew,
    I have two questions.
    1. What kinds of applications do DLT members (e.g. principals) do for which they would need a laptop instead of a chromebook?

    2. Since the approved teacher device is a chromebook, what will we do about applications that won't run on a chromebook? I'm thinking, for example, of the test preparation software provided by the adopted Algebra I text book and the ExamView Software that goes with the Connected Math program.

    I'm behind the curve on printing from a chromebook, but I hope it will be possible and easy. There are instances where things have to be printed - I"m thinking about parents who don't have a device or access.

    Libby Black

    1. Hi Libby,

      1. Principals are lumped into the administrator category which allow for Chromebooks or Laptops where needed. This is true for teachers in that Chromebooks are the default device, but your principal can use school/student funding to provide a PC or Mac to a teacher who can not use a teacher Chromebook.

      2a. On printing from the Chromebook, you can find out how in this knowledge base article:

      2b. For Windows only applications, we need you to put in an IT Service request so we can determine if there is web based version of the tool. If not we have Windows on Demand which may work. Details can be found:

      Either way the Ed Tech team will work with you on a transition or at the discretion of your principal, using school allocated "points", an laptop can be purchased.


  3. Hi, I got a math question that would help me explain the tech tools to my building. If $570,000 is allocated to "teacher" tools, and equipment is updated every 5 years, that adds up to aroun $2.85 million every 5 years. If 2800 teacher are allotted 31 points ($240) every 5 years, thats like $672,000. Then office professionals and admin need computers, but do all those costs add up to $2 million every 5 years? Is there anyway you can make clear your thinking and the other relevant info that show how these monies are going towards this other equipment? That would really help us explain things.

    1. The "emp" calculations include Chromebooks, laptops for those requiring them (CS, Engineering, Digital Arts, etc), Administration at the schools and Ed Center, and Labs where desktops are needed, and the recognition that the first two years are going to be a heavier load as we update over a thousand emp devices each year. If money is left over it will be reallocated on a two year rolling basis back to the schools in points.


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