Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Technology Tools for 2018-2019

I am excited to share details on the 2018-2019 technology tools program which will be rolling out to schools this spring. Every other year, each school receives an allocation of “technology points” based on their enrollment. Schools are then able to spend their points to upgrade technology in their school.

This year’s model is simplified to better reflect current-day needs. With IT now covering maintenance costs, employee devices, and committing to reducing student equity challenges throughout the district by allocating funds to distance learning and the 1:Web program, school-based technology points can be specifically focused on student devices, labs, and classroom innovation needs. With the 2018-2019 technology tools update, schools will have more flexibility in how to spend their technology points.

At schools that are not in the 1:Web program, there will not be significant changes in the funding model. These schools will be able to spend their technology points on student devices, computer labs, and a new category called innovation tools.

The innovation category includes tools that are available at our newly-built schools, making sure this technology is open to everyone in the district. Some of these exciting items include: TV displays with casting capability, 3D Printers, Maker Kits, video production tools, and pen tablets.

Schools participating in the 1:Web program will also receive technology points, but without the need to buy as many student devices, they will be able to allocate more of those technology points to the innovation category.

If your school is on the cycle to update their technology tools this coming school year, the IT Ed Tech and Service Delivery teams will be coming by to talk with your principal this spring. We are excited to see how the use of these new innovative technologies will enhance the learning environment! 

One last thing - the technology point allocations at the schools will look larger this year, but the dollar amount will remain the same. We have moved away from 100 points being equal to the cost of a Windows device, to 100 points being equal to the cost of a Chromebook. This reflects the shift away from Windows devices to cloud-based Chromebooks. The increased point count should not be confused with more money being allocated.

Please chime in with any comments, thoughts, or suggestions. They are appreciated.