From chalkboards to featherweight laptops, technology in schools has improved so drastically and so quickly that it can be difficult to keep up. Fortunately, our school district provides access to a great variety of technology. This year is no different, as the school district has added and changed quite a bit. Although the changes and technology may complicate things during the initial transition, the overall outcome will certainly improve the learning experience of each student.
Overall, the school district has had a few major technology changes as part of its technology conversion plan. One of the biggest replacements was in regards to the network system, myOWN. In addition, staff members were issued laptops, Chromebook carts were added and the BYOD program was implemented.
Infrastructure was updated to handle all of the additional devices on the network. Additional access points for wireless devices were updated; the speed of the network has been drastically upgraded. Certified staff was issued laptops. Multiple software platforms have changed, this was all a part of the districts Technology Conversion plan, “Technology Supervisor and Assistant Principle, Jessica Mamias said.
The original myOWN network system was not cutting it for the hundreds of students and staff members at our school—all of whom need access to the internet. There were countless times when teachers were having trouble with Internet due to the over loaded network. The new network system will eliminate that issue by making the network stronger and able to support more devices at one time. This change will definitely improve overall efficiency in the classroom.
“The current myOWN network is older and unable to handle the demand. There was one myOWN password for all students/staff. The new BYOD network is linked to a student/staff login. This way staff will have a different filter for access to materials from students. This will also allow for different filters for age of students.” Mamias said.
Another major change in technology has been the addition of the BYOD (bring your own device) program. Although our school is very fortunate to have so many accessible devices, there is simply not enough
for everyone. The BYOD program will allow all students to have access to a device at all times. If a student doesn’t have their own device or they don’t want to put in the money to buy it, there are plenty of devices for students to access.
“We are encouraging our fifth through 12th grade students to bring their devices to school. Our vision is for students to use technology during the school day as well as at home to support their learning.” Instructional Technology Supervisor, Jessica Fields said, according to the Olentangy Local Schools website.
In the process of improving the technology, there are now 16 Chromebook carts at the school, two laptop carts, and four computer labs. This addition will give more students access to the internet. This extension will be very useful throughout the school. It was always a struggle for teachers to get computer lab time when working on projects or activities, but the carts allow any room to become a computer lab. The update will de definitely have a positive impact on our school and district as a whole.