Tech Notes

May 2019 - 2nd edition

We are approaching the final phase of selecting a vendor and system to replace or upgrade our current phones. It is down to two options; it is expected that we will make a final determination and hope to have Board approval for the project as of May 20th.


Once we make that selection, we will start communicating what will be changing and when we may expect to have system outages or any other types of disruptions for this project. We do expect all of the major work to be completed over summer.

Another summer project will be a switch from the Securly filtering system to the Lightspeed Relay product.


Any significant change in a web filter like this will have some bumps along the way as we work to reconfigure things. One example of this is that we will need to clarify what current student filtering levels like "No Social Media" and "Aggressive" will look like or how they will function in the new system. That being said, we do believe that we will have a more seamless and effective experience with this product, which is a major reason why we are making the switch.


On a related note, all Apple devices must meet certain standards for the system to work properly. For iPads, this means being on iOS 12 or above. For MacBooks, this means being on High Sierra or newer software. If you are wondering why we are pushing for software updates, that is part of the reason. (And for those wondering why we are not upgrading to Mojave yet, there are still some incompatibilities with other software commonly used here that are being worked out). High Sierra on MacBooks is our standard for the moment.

More Volunteers Needed!


We would like to identify one or two locations at each building where we can do audio-visual installations in order to get some authentic usage of equipment and substantive feedback.


A survey is available if you would like to offer up yourself and your space for this.


Requirements


  • We will need to evaluate the room and ensure that we can add a system without disrupting what is currently in place.
  • Selected staff will agree to provide feedback on the pilot system at regular intervals.
  • Selected staff will also agree to allow other staff to try out the pilot system (outside of regular class time).


If it seems like we are taking a lot of time to go through the process of upgrading our classroom audio-visual systems, well, that is by design. It is a potentially huge expense and we would like to get it right. We are also well aware of the potential for disruption as we explore other types of interactive displays, which is why we are committing to make every effort to maintain Smart Notebook licensing through the 2021-2022 school year, if not longer.


The goal right now is to do pilot room installations over summer, evaluate through fall into winter, and be prepared next spring to make decisions and start mapping out our replacement cycle for the district.

Summer Projects

In addition to phone system upgrades and filtering changes, here are a few other summer projects:



  • 2nd grade iPads: New iPad carts, 1:1 distribution of new iPad.
  • 1st grade iPads: Additional charging crate, 1:1 distribution of new iPad.
  • Middle Schools: Refresh/Replace most of the existing older HP Chromebooks.
  • High School: Refresh one lab with PLTW PCs.
  • Apple TVs: 3rd generation (smaller model) replaced with 4K model district-wide (about 500).
  • Wireless Access Points: Oldest model replaced district-wide (about 200).
  • Infinite Campus: Build and deploy On-line Registration functionality. This will make it easier for families to do a new enrollment or to do an annual update to their information. More details about this project will be sent out soon.
  • Staff MacBook refresh: This will be a 3-year project, split into 1/3 of staff each year. First year will be oldest devices, targeted groups, and devices that have the highest number of battery cycles (meaning that the battery is likely to not hold a charge as well as it used to). Most of this will occur in early fall, but we will start in summer with any available staff.

Keepcertified & Frontline Reminder

KeepCertified will disappear on June 30.


Here are notes on doing a master record transfer from KeepCertified to Frontline.


Courses and registration will be handled through Frontline for the 2019-2020 school year and beyond.


More news and notes about Frontline Professional Learning Management will be sent out late summer or around the start of the next school year.

Device roll-ins will be occurring mostly during the last week of the school year.


Here is the current schedule.


Tech will be in contact with each building and work with building admin and staff to coordinate the process. In addition to the schedule, we have posted various tutorials for backing up files and data that are applicable to both students and staff.

You read the newsletter! Thank you! Be on the look-out for a phishing e-mail in the next week or so.