Tech Updates Week 2

Just what you needed before Labor Day!

iPad Deployment

China Grove Middle was the first middle school to deploy in Rowan-Salisbury Schools. We have huge successes due to the team work of our staff and working together as a team. I am very appreciative for everyone. I have to send special shout outs to Mrs. Woodward, Ms. Erwin, Miss Simmerson, all of 6th grade, Mrs. Basinger, Mrs. Murdock, and Mrs. Harrington. Everyone has worked really to get iPads in the hands of as many students as possible.


Currently we have less than 20 iPads from returning 7th and 8th graders remaining to be distributed. Over 85% of our students have iPads. We are now ready to distribute any students who are new to Rowan-Salisbury Schools as well as students who may have transferred from our sister schools.


Please pay attention to emails with iPad directives. Thank you for all your help and support.

iPad Apps, Self Service, & Games

iPads that were enrolled correctly should no longer have unapproved apps. Currently RSS has not put the tight restrictions on devices due to enrollment. Once those restrictions are put in place, we will be notified of illegal apps. Once we are notified that this service is active, I will let you know.


Many of you have noticed that the Pages, Keynote, and Numbers apps are not on the iPad. The system will be rolling these out through self service. I encourage you to check Self Service often to see if they are there.


Currently downloading apps from the Self Service store is a little "buggy." I have had some success downloading apps to students iPads. I want to investigate this a little more.

Tech Support for Classrooms & Teachers (SCHOOL DUDE IS NOW AVAILABLE)

I appreciate your patience. I know that many of you do not have working projectors, activ boards, and other challenges. This is on my next priority. I gained administrative acccess to SchoolDude yesterday. I will begin to review requests already submitted and respond to them.


For those who have submitted a SchoolDude in the last month, I will begin to respond and work toward a resolution on the SchoolDude ticket.


In the meantime, if you have difficulty, please submit a school dude ticket by either going to the China Grove Middle School webpage and clicking on Faculty & Staff and you should see School Dude-quick link listed. Choose this option and enter your email address.


Provide as much information as possible on the problem that you are experiencing. You must include all categories marked with a check mark. Provide the tag number if you are able to find it. If it is a projector or something that the TAG number is not viewable, please input in a 6 digit code (any combination of 6 digits or letters will suffice if the TAG number is not available). The final step asks for a password. Please enter rsss.


Once the ticket is entered, I will receive notice and can move forward with solving the problem.

ACHIEVE 3000 Update

You may have heard that the system has adopted ACHIEVE 3000. ACHIEVE 3000 is an amazing program that allows students to read various articles and complete activities at reading levels appropriate for them. There are many amazing features. This summer, Miss Simmerson and I spent over a hour speaking with one of ACHIEVE 3000's representative regarding the program. Each of us were impressed and I am very excited that Rowan-Salisbury will adopt this program. We will receive extensive support as we move towards it use. I think that each of you will find the program amazing. Students who are using ACHIEVE 3000 have shown increased reading levels of 2.5 years in just 1 year of use. As information becomes available, it will be shared.

IAM UPDATE - USE INCOGNITO or PRIVATE VIEW

We have received a lot of questions about PowerSchool and IAMM. Obviously there are some issues that are still occurring with the IAM. I have the best way to work with IAM if you have difficulty is to completely exit your browser. To do this, you can hold command and Q at the same time. This will completely exit the browser.


Relaunch the browser and go to either PRIVATE browsing in Safari (hold shift + command + n at the same time) or INCOGNITO browsing in Chrome (shift + command + n at the same time). If you are using FireFox, use shift + command + p. If you are Camino, WHY? Don't ever use Camino (I will lose my street cred as a TF - remember TFs don't let their staff use Camino).


Keep in mind that you may have to repeat this process a couple of times since IAM can be glitchy.

Gradebook & Schoology

Next week, I plan to meet with each grade level for an update on the Gradebook and Schoology. Schoology is set up to sync with the gradebook in PowerTeacher. If you are planning on having students submit work electronically, then they should submit work through Schoology. Grading in Schoology is fairly straight forward and I really like it.


Once your grading is complete, you can sync your Schoology account with PowerSchool so that you do not have to enter grades multiple times. We will discuss this next week also. I will let your grade level chair know what day that we will meet so you can be prepared to set up your gradebook in both PowerSchool and Schoology.


You should have your students access Schoology through Safari by going to http://rss.schoology.com. Once there, they will use their userID and password to gain access to the course. In most cases, all your students should be in your Schoology course. If they are not, wait until Tuesday to see if this has corrected itself.


Student Email & UserNames

Earlier this week I sent out information for student emails and it appears that this process went very smoothly (AWESOME JOB CGMS STAFF & STUDENTS). Remember that student gaggle email addresses NO longer work (even though this address is associated with most student APPLE IDs). All students will use gmail with NO data limit for their Google Drive (they can pack as many files in there as they want).


Remember that they will go to Gmail and enter their email address as username@rssed.org. All students have the same username format - last name first initial middle initial last 3 of lunch number (whitsonba222@rssed.org). Their password is their full lunch numbers.


This username is also used for accessing Self Service, Schoology, and most other student accounts.

Z-Scaler

Z-Scaler is the web filtering software that is installed on the iPad and it automatically turns on when the student iPad is connected to a non-RSS Wifi system.


Students will be asked for their username is their userID@rss.k12.nc.us (notice that the address is @rss.k12.nc.us). The password is their lunch number.


Please share with students as I am beginning to several requests about this from parents.

Make Sure that "FIND MY iPAD" is enabled.

A few students have asked for me to ding their iPads after misplacing their iPads. In order for me to use "FIND MY iPAD," this feature must be enabled on their iPad. To turn this feature on, follow the directions below:


Here's how to enable Find My iPad:

  1. From the iPad's home screen, tap Settings.
  2. Tap iCloud on the sidebar. The screen shown below appears. (Note that you must be signed in to your iCloud account on your iPad. If you are not signed in with your APPLE ID, please sign in.)
  3. Slide the Find My iPad switch to the On position.


Also I must be able to log into student's iCloud accounts. Please encourage your students to make sure that they do not change their APPLE ID password without informing me. If they do, I cannot get into their account to locate their iPad.

HAVE A GREAT AND SAFE LABOR DAY! You all are amazing and I am very honored to work with you.