October 2018 Technology Newsletter

By: Michael Kealy

Coming Soon! Changes To BCSD Public Wi-Fi Network

The Technology Department will be making some changes to the way users access the district's BCSD PUBLIC guest wireless network. These changes are being made to align with the best practices of the industry as recommended by the New York State Comptroller's Office.


One of the recommendations include requiring a password to access public and/or guest wireless networks. The district will be requiring a password to login to the public guest wireless network in the future.


Another recommendation is to have written policies governing the use of wireless networks. As a result a splash page will be setup which will require users to read, review, and accept the district's terms, conditions, and policies prior to accessing our public guest wireless network similar to the message you already receive when you login to a district owned PC.


You will most likely notice that these changes align with the requirements many public and private organizations have already implemented when granting public access to their guest wireless networks. Information will be forthcoming via the BCSD district email system when these changes are implemented.

Clean Data Training

Clean Data Training is now underway! Please check with the clean data trainer(s) in your building for the next available training session. Staff should work with their clean data trainer(s) to attend a scheduled session. A reminder that Clean Data trainers should not be interrupted during instructional time for assistance.

Trainers:

Thomas Burns

William Castaldi

Debra Waage

Gloria Rosati Peterson

Renee Ferrara

Sarah Coleman

Alicia Smith

Kaitlin Phelan

Cybersecurity Tips

Google:

A reminder that all users should sign out of their BCSD Google Account when it is not being used. This includes signing out of your BCSD Google Account on personal devices at home. Staying signed in may allow unauthorized users to use your account and access your files. The picture above shows you where you can find the sign out button. If you need further assistance please submit a Technology Help Ticket.


Passwords:

Please create unique passwords when you are prompted to reset your password. Industry experts are now recommending users create a 3 word phrase as their password. i.e. iloveschool. The old advice of adding capitals and special characters has become more predictable over time.


Please do not use the same password you use on district computer systems for personal accounts and/or computer systems. The Technology Department has been made aware of a scam impacting neighboring school districts where personal accounts/computer system passwords have been hacked. The scammer then uses the password obtained from personal accounts/computer systems to send an email message to the users work email address which displays the stolen password(s) and claims that they have access to the district owned computer system. Since in many cases the passwords are the same, the user believes that the scammer already has access to their district owned computer. The scammer then tries to extort either information or money from the user. If you encounter an email like this please contact the Technology Help Desk and do not respond to the email.

New! K-12 Discovery Education Streaming Plus Now Available For BCSD Teachers

This school year the district purchased a subscription to Discovery Education Streaming Plus. This product gives teachers access to the following:


87,000 video segments

27,500 reading passages, learning guides, and encyclopedia articles

24,000 images

11,400 math explanations and overviews

3,000 podcasts and audio files

3,000 sound effects

2,600 commemorative and historic events with curated digital content

2,300 writing prompts and quizzes

1,800 songs

400 skill builders and games

On-demand virtual field trips

Collaborative projects

Virtual reality videos


Please contact your library media specialist or the technology help desk to access this program.


PS: The Technology Department is in the process of working to integrate Google Single Sign On for this product to make it easier for teachers and students to login using their BCSD Google accounts.

High School Interactive Boards

The Technology Department is excited to announce that we have delivered over 15 new Dell Interactive Boards to high school classrooms giving more high school teachers the ability to create, develop, and deliver interactive content to our students. It is both the department and district's goal to ensure every classroom at the high school has an interactive board in the future.

Automated Phone Attendant Updates

Calling the district? You may have noticed a change. In September the Technology Department updated the automated phone attendant so that office names and extensions are accurate.