Welcome! In this time of Coronavirus challenges I want the opportunity to share thoughts, ideas, and questions that I hope are helpful to all of those amazing educators that are doing so much for our students. While I know I may fall short in some ways, I do hope everyone can discover at least one idea that might help their school, parents and students as they take on this new challenge (opportunity) in learning. Please feel free to contact me via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Twitter at (@mjgormans). If anything, I have learned from experience and if I can help you at this time… please feel free to reach out. I would be happy to join you and your staff in a Web Meeting. I do hope you read, and please share with others through email and Tweets. It lets me know that I might be making a small difference. – Mike
In this series I would like to take the time to share some e-Learning ideas and pose some questions as schools look at winding down this school year and begin to look at the next year. Some of the ideas I would like to bring out in this series include:
- Managing devices from school year end to start
- Data collection for planning
- PD for the next level of eLearning in a district
- Planning Blended Learning for another year
- Short term and long term goals for Blended Learning
Please look for these topics in upcoming posts. If you have contributions to make or ideas to supply please email me at email@example.com, or send me a tweet at mjgormans . I am trying to build even more ideas to share with everyone! Let’s start with the idea of managing devices from school year end to start. I hope the information is helpful to you!
Coronavirus eLearning Series… Ideas To Think About Now… Before Next Year: Idea 1…Devices
As we go though this Pandemic we must consider and make plans for how digital devices will be managed before, during, and after the summer break. None of us has a Crystal Ball, so we can not be sure what the future holds. While we all hope for a quick resolution, we must also be prepared for uncertainty. It is important that school districts have a short term device plan that is well thought out and vetted by a committee of district stakeholders. The big immediate question is to either collect devices at the end of the school year, or have students keep them. This really is a decision that is unique to each individual school system.
Below I have the two directions and have tried to supply some questions you might ask your committee as you journey down this decision road. I know there are possibly so many other questions, but thought this might get you off to a productive start.
A. Some districts may decide to collect devices back at the end of the school year. If so, how will this be done for the safety of all involved?
- Do you need to work out your plan with area health departments?
- What will the logistics look like in order to promote a safe collection?
- How will devices be stored?
- Is there a waiting period before working on the devices required
- How are devices to be cleaned and disinfected if possible?
- How will devices be issued next year, if school is open and if school is closed?
- Are there students taking summer courses that will need devices?
- With the exception of Seniors and those leaving the district, might it be better for students to keep them over the summer?
- If devices are in their last year, what give away or purchase options are available?
- What additions to budget might be needed to collect devices?
B. On the other hand a school district may decide to have students keep devices over the summer because the time period can be rather short and it may be more productive in the end. What are some things that might need to be thought about?
- What will be the procedures for seniors and those leaving the district to hand them in?
- What are the ramifications with any insurance of the devices in relationship to policies in, or not in, effect?
- Is there a need and capability to disable devices remotely if the district decides this is a prudent action?
- What updates will the devices need for the next year and how might this be accomplished in the summer?
- What type of help desk services might be available through the summer?
- What type of summer care instructions may need to be sent out?
- How might schools capitalize on the idea that students have the devices all summer?
- How might needed routine maintenance be accomplished once school begins?
- What must we think about in maintaining network operations?
- What budget planning maybe needed to accommodate both the needs and possible attrition due to devices staying with students.
Our schools have done an amazing job navigating these uncharted waters. Schools have reacted in a way that has been beneficial to students. As we continue this journey and finally find sometime to breathe, we must also be proactive in our planning. I do hope these ideas and questions are helpful as you continue to build, facilitate, and improve eLearning for all students.
Think of this new reality, as a pilot, and know that educators, students, and parents will make adjustments on this journey. Please feel free to contact me via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Twitter at (@mjgormans). If anything, I have learned from experience and if I can help you at this time… please feel free to reach out. I would be happy to join you and your staff in a Web Meeting. I do hope you read, and please share with others through email and Tweets. It lets me know that I might be making a small difference. It is important that we document the process so we can learn and plan from it. Thanks for joining me and please feel free to check with me on questions you might have involving lessons that I have learned. Best of all… remember that spring will be here soon! – Mike