Before I created Freeperiod I was an ICT Network Manager. There is a CSI element to the role of Network Manager.
As a Network Manager you get calls to come and investigate some upsetting scenes. ICT rooms in a total mess, laptop keyboards with keys removed, grafitti on computers and the theft of mice balls. Thankfully optical mice solved the problem of ball-less mice. I do remember however lamenting with the Technology & Design Technician when a student decided to cut through the lead of one of his soldering irons while it was still plugged in.
I took a zero tolerance approach to damage. I discovered that if I left damage unchecked the problem got worse. For example, if there were one or two keyboards in a classroom with grafitti the problem would spread. Removing the grafitti or keyboard nipped the problem in the bud.
I also discovered another fauble of managing rooms. Putting chairs under the desks at the end of the lesson resulted in the next class doing the same. As people we seem to respond to our environment accordingly. If we come in to a messy room we show it less respect and vice versa.
So hats off to those who manage our school’s resources and create postive environments which say, “we write in our excercise books here, not our equipment”.
In the UK schools have invested a great deal of money in iPads. Are these iPads being put to good use or have they been put in the cupboard alongside the Raspberry Pis?
When working in education I observed the feel good factor of buying new IT equipment. If your school had lots of IT equipment then it must be really good at IT. It is true you can see a school’s value of technology being demonstrated by their investment. It is also true that the same technology can be put aside after the initial wave of excitement.
Schools using Freeperiod can measure their investment in iPads. I just checked with one of our Freeperiod schools and a sample report shows they have shared one of their iPad trolleys forty seven times in the last four weeks. This seems pretty good in my book. Are you able to measure how effectively your school iPads with the same degree of detail?
Getting your school Wifi infratructure right is really important. A good solution will work quietly in the background and extend your school network. A bad solution will frustrate your staff and students and bring users knocking on your door. Continue reading →