Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Start of year with CHS student devices

One of the changes for all of us heading into the 16-17 school year is the student device program for CHS.  Most students will still have iPads, but about 25% chose the BYOD option.  Some of those students will likely bring iPads, but some will also bring laptops or possibly even chromebooks.

We'd like to avoid technology disruptions in your classroom as much as possible.  Teachers, please do not feel that you need to solve technical issues for your students.  In general, Patty and I will be available to provide student help as quickly as possible, especially in the first few weeks, but keep in mind that we may not be able to get everyone right away.  Please keep this in mind as you plan your lessons for the first few days.

Some students have not picked up their new devices and may be using an old device, or they may not have a device right away.  For the first week or so, we will NOT get students their new device before school or during class time!  We will be available after school to work with the students in completing their paperwork and picking up the device they leased from us.

Basic information you can provide to students:

WiFi:  CCS Mobile, the password is always Cozad789.  To avoid confusion, I've disabled the guest network.  Any networks "seen" other than CCS Mobile are NOT school networks.  Connecting to other networks (usually residential networks from neighbors, but could also be hotspots from student phones) may give students internet access, but they should NOT be connecting to any WiFi network other than CCS Mobile.

Keep in mind that some student-owned devices may have cellular network access just as phones do, and that most phones today can be used as mobile hotspots.  Be aware that ONLY the school network is filtered.  We recommend that your classroom rules explicitly prohibit the use of networks other than CCS Mobile.

Where to get help.  In general, Patty will work with iPad issues, and I'll handle everything else, but this is not a hard and fast rule.  For the first few days, we will both be available before school in Patty's office area.  Feel free to let students know where both of our offices are.

  • You are welcome to send students to us for help during your class time if that is what you prefer, but this is not required.  Students can see us before and after school if you do not want them to leave your classroom or miss time with you.
  • You are welcome to help students with devices, but this is not something you are required to do!  Again, our goal is to minimize disruptions for you.  If students have problems, send them our way or inform them that they should see us before or after school.  If a student's device is not functioning, you may have to pair them with another student or provide an alternate means of participation.  
  • Students may provide the most effective help to each other.  Don't be afraid to ask other students to help out.
  • If it fits within your classroom rules and with your permission, students may use their phone.
  • These issues should diminish as we get into the year, but it is likely there will be problems at first.
  • If you prefer, feel free to submit a helpdesk on behalf of the student, or you can email us.  We get notified right away when a ticket is submitted.  The link for submitting a helpdesk is located on our school webpage under Staff-Requests.  Students are welcome to submit tickets as well.
Thank you for help and patience as we make the adjustments in the device program this year!

Dave and Patty

Thursday, August 11, 2016

CHS Library Computers for 2016-17

Computers for student and class use will be available through the CHS library.  These will include 14 laptops with all of the latest adobe software and Office2016 installed.  These are the larger format laptops from DakTech.

There will also be at least 10 Lenovo Laptops.  These are not the small x120e model, but the larger T410 computers which many staff still use.  These computers will have Acrobat and Office2016 installed, but do not include the full Adobe suite.  

Teachers should confer with each other and plan with Ms. Osborn for use of these computers.  They may be removed from the lab during class, with permission.  Please make sure than when they are returned, they are reconnected to the charger.  There will be spare chargers available for the Lenovo computers, as some of those batteries do not last long.  There are no spare chargers for the DakTech computers.

For login purposes, students may use their own account, or they may choose to log in with one of the generic student accounts (grade9, grade10, grade11, or grade12).  The generic account password is Cozad123.

One advantage to students in using their own account is that they have server space to save their files (Z: drive).  This is true with the generic accounts as well, but the Z: drive is accessible to anyone else who uses that account.  If your students need to save files locally, they should log in with their own accounts and use the Z: drive.

Students may log into Chrome, but be sure to remind them to log out when they are done, particularly if they are using a generic account!  

Also keep in mind that while google drive sync is installed on teacher computers, students do not have this, so if they want to save files to their google drive, they will need to manually upload them.

Please contact Ms. Osborn for more information on the use of these computers.