Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Marshall County School District - Model 21st Century School District

A recent blog recognized our school district as a model 21st century school district. It is great to know that others recognize the hard work our faculty, staff and administration have put in over the past few years to raise our district's overall integration and implementation of technology. We have spent many long hours to continue moving our district forward - to be the premier district for technology integration in the state of KY. Thanks to the support in our district from top to bottom - we are able to continue to move forward.



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Thursday, April 23, 2009

One Year Anniversary - CIO Corner

sunset on the tracksImage by -Chad Johnson via Flickr

It has been 365 days since my first post here at CIO Corner. With the original intent in mind of providing information, tools, implementation stories and integration techniques for K-12 environments, I hope some of my posts have generated conversations and promoted integration, collaboration and communication on the topics.

Over the course of the past year I have blogged about applications, hardware, software, theory and shared resources. The iPhone, Laptops for Teachers, Content Filtering, specific reviews (Dell and HP netbooks), conferences I have attended and specific initiatives in our district.

My goal is to continue to share information, ideas and resources that will better enable you to effectively and efficiently implement and integrate technology in your school district, building and classroom.

If you have any suggestions for topics of discussion, please let me know. Here is to another year of sharing, growing and learning!

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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

VLC Media Player

VLC media playerImage via Wikipedia

This was shared to me by my two co-op students (thx guys) and I have been impressed with it. I am always looking for an easy way to play multiple video formats - without having to switch back and forth between players or make sure I have the appropriate plug-in, update, etc. installed.

VLC player solves your problems. Give it a try...


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Sunday, April 19, 2009

District Technology

Five years ago when I took this post for my district, one of my goals was to establish a district technology committee which would create and oversee a district technology plan. This document has been a live, working document for the past four years and has helped track the progress of our district over the course of time. Here is a link to our district technology page along with the plan:


We have also recently established a new district technology vision and mission statement. Here is a link to those items:


Finally, one of the items that has been a work in progress over the last year has been a CIO newsletter. I wanted to ensure all employees of our district were communicated the same information regarding projects, integration and district technology in general. The creation of this newsletter has allowed me to do that. It will distributed quarterly.


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Friday, April 17, 2009

Geek 1.0 v. Geek 2.0

I came across this image on the Education blog via ZDNet. (Thanks to Christopher Dawson.) I would call myself a Geek 2.0 - don't think I was ever a 1.0.


Thursday, April 16, 2009

Monday, April 6, 2009

Laptops for Teachers

HP Pavilion zv6115EA.Image via Wikipedia

We are in the early stages of evaluating the overall value of laptops for our teachers. The most obvious issue is cost. When you can currently purchase approximately 2.5 desktops vs. 1 laptop - it would be a heavy upfront cost. After the initial questions - others begin to arise - and I would like your thoughts on these questions and the project as a whole.

  • Laptops vs. Netbooks? Do teachers need a laptop, or would a netbook meet their needs? If so, cost is no longer an issue. Do certain teachers (power users) need a laptop - are you providing better tools to some than others?
  • Are you really getting "free work"? I have heard this argument before and have yet to find a reason to disagree with it. If teachers are able to take their device home with them - are they more likely to plan, research and work from home - thus providing a better learning environment for their students?
  • What happens when a teacher is out for the day and the lesson plan requires use of interactive tools? Do you have "back up" devices on-site? Must the substitute teacher be creative?
  • Do you control the content and applications used when outside the school building? Obviously while on their campus - usage will be monitored, but when the user takes the device home and connects to their personal Internet service - should the district still control the device?
  • Does a "Laptop for Teacher" program need to come before a 1:1 initiative in a school district? If a district were to implement a 1:1 for students - what if your teachers are not "up to par" with technology? They will be forced to learn on the fly and the upfront instruction / integration could be lacking. If the Laptop for Teacher program were implemented first and teachers were given a couple of years to learn new ways to integrate the device - would a student laptop program be more successful?
Give me your thoughts - pros and cons.


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