Tuesday, November 18, 2014

November 2014 DLIC Meeting Minutes

The DLIC met on Thursday evening November 7 at 5:30 in Alan's Rm.

In attendance were chair Frank Krasicki, Superintendent Bruce Silva, IT staff Seth and Jaimie, engineering instructor Bob Valle, Science instructor Dr. Bill Green, Math instructor Sue Palmberg, and special guest Richard Staron.

Richard Staron is a computer software enthusiast who wanted to observe and join the committee's discussion about technology at EO Smith.  We hope to gainfully engage him in future ventures.

Seth Horila discussed the following items;

DLC Meeting 11-2014
"FY 2014-15 Capital Replacement & Budgeted Education Technology Requests:
  • Replaced student workstations in LMC, Video Production and 212 Lab.
  • Added 6 workstations to LMC
  • Tech Lab 133 was upgraded to 256GB SSD system drives for performance.
  • Replaced staff workstations in Special Services and Guidance
  • 14 Chromebooks deployed to Special Services
  • 84 Lenovo X140 Windows-based laptops deployed to Math
  • 6 Lenovo X140 Windows-based laptops deployed to English Assistance
  • Replaced 4 aging LaserJets in office areas.
  • IDF that serves Math classrooms was reconfigured with a secured dust-proof enclosure
  • Main core switch was upgraded. Jumbo-frames now capable with compatible links.
  • 24 Chromebooks to be purchased for LMC Cart
  • 24 Chromebooks to be purchased for Science
  • 10 workstations to replace WL Staff
  • Fine Arts to receive a 24” inkjet for artwork
  • Carrie Frederick was awarded a grant for a sound room for video production
  • Additional Chromebooks in LMC for checkout for staff/students.

The District eBoard contract has expired and faculty have shifted to Moodle or their own solution"

Bill Green mentioned that Moodle usage is surging and that the durability of the Chromebooks has been surprisingly good.
Seth also mentioned that a new Google classroom module was gaining teacher acceptance.  Bill Green added that the Google component was superior to Moodle in this regard but that Moodle was still the place where persistent class participation reference material is available.  Google's attraction is a cleaner and more simple interface for everything else.
Sue announced that she had received funding for a Professional Development weekend in the Northwest having to do with Smartboard technology.
The rest of the evening's meeting was spent watching and listening to Bob Valli demonstrate the unmanned aerial vehicle being exercised by some of students.  This included a tour of his classroom that features two flight simulators, a 3-D printer, a laser cutter and numerous other "maker" tools.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

April 2014 DLIC Meeting Notes

STORRS, CT 06268
April 22, 2014

PRESENT: Bill Green, Frank Krasicki (Chair), Bruce Silva, Susan Palmberg, Nancy Silander,
Alan Trotochaud

Also: Seth Horila, Jaime

  1. Moodle – Since summer, 2010, 12 faculty actively using Moodle. School will move out of E-boards as of August 31, 2014, and will support only Moodle. Teachers have an option of moving to Moodle, paying out-of-pocket ($39) to keep E-board, or moving to another platform. Ten tech coaches have been working with faculty. In January we put it in our virtual environment, and have sufficient bandwith to support it.
In general, teachers find it easier to differentiate instruction; can put up videos as well as visuals more easily.

  1. BYOD - Not enough computers for most classes – need to share. Students sometimes prefer the larger screen to their phone screens. Using BYOD is a paradigm shift for teachers and students so still working out the kinks.
There are still about 5% of the student body who have no access to Internet at home whether due to economic circumstances or by choice. Teachers must take this into account when developing lessons.

  1. Seth and Jaime – gave an up-date on distribution of carts with Chrome books or I-pads – many have been obtained through various grants, and thus are restricted to who may use them, at least initially. Seven departments received carts with various technology.
There is some competition among faculty for technology and the feeling that it is not always equitably distributed. It was recommended that Seth go to a Department Head meeting and give a report similar to his Board Committee report, as well as to work with DH’s to develop a process for technology access.
Future projects: developing a capital replacement plan for technology; continuing to successfully support on-line testing such as ACT Aspire, national German exam, and Smarter Balance, and integrating funding requests for 2014-2015.

Respectfully submitted,

Nancy Silander

Sunday, January 19, 2014

February 2014 EO Smith Digital Learning Initiative Committee Agenda

Agenda for the Digital Learning Committee Meeting, February 11, 2014, 5:30 P.M

Update:  We moved the January meeting over to February to allow time for more people to attend.

Alan Trotochad's Room

1.) Update on digital related funding, acquisition, courseware, and teacher initiatives, digital inventory progress

2.) General discussion on the possibility of adding a non-Carnegie seat learning venue that replaces the Word/Excel/Microsoft curriculum.

This might consist of numerous subject area components that emphasize digital tools and techniques used by that department, for example; wikis in English, Moodle in science, iPad apps in math, or whatever. Students would then have a framework of expectations for how and what is expected in certain classes and as a by-product of successfully completing classwork the students would get micro-credits for covering the subject.

Some minimum number of micro-credit combinations would earn them a course credit.

So we could discuss that as well as desired content familiarity. For example, personal security, digital social good behavior, communication etiquette, and so on.

We have talked about potentially creating a Moodle testbed for such a set of courseware. We can play with that idea as well.

3.) Other topics

We wind it up by 7:00