Date: January 18th, 2011 To: Michael Green From: Steve Rippl Subject: Tech Dept. Executive Summary
We got most of our planned work done over the Christmas break. Richard Findlay seems very happy with his situation, having doubled the computers in his room his students can work in smaller groups when analysing their data, and he has found OpenOffice to be wholly suitable for plotting the graphs and the producing equations that he requires. The switch upgrades (actually more like re-shuffles, moving more powerful switches we already had to more appropriate places) went smoothly and so we've improved the efficiency of the network somewhat in the High School and Primary School. We upgraded a few student computers at the Intermediate School with better stock that we had sitting around in our office, our shelves are pretty bare now for a change! We didn't get up to Yale until the first week back at School, but the wireless and computer cart are in place now and functioning well.
The State has released the new versions of the online testing software and demos which we'll shortly be installing and testing ourselves. This year we have the additional Middle School science test and the Intermediate School 6th grade reading and math. We're very fortunate that the State is supporting their software on Linux as this pretty much doubles the number of computers we have available for testing and our schools can get through testing in pretty short order.
We're trying to improve the number of online resources we have for tech support and so we're in the process of creating a Tech Wiki and moving the limited material we had on our regular web site to it and creating some new ones. You can find it here (http://www.edtechwiki.net/EdTechClassroom/WebHome) if you are curious. It is still a work in progress, I'm trying to persuade tech folks from other school districts to join in the creation of resources as that's what a Wiki is all about (many hand make light work and all that!).
Work in Sips continues as we improve the data around individual student interventions. It seems as though going forwards this will be the first time we have a clear and easily accessible picture of what interventions a student has been through during their time in the different buildings. Some staff at the Middle School are also taking an interest in accessing the 6th grade history to better help serve the students as they first come up to the Middle School.