We are pleased to announce a new IT & Laptop Policy is being introduced at Bodwell High School. The full rollout of the program will be in September 2015 for all students and staff. For the large part of the last decade, Bodwell has operated under a BYOD IT model where students and staff brought their own device. The IT team would then try to help adapt the computer to the needs of the school network and learning requirements of teachers in the classroom and out. This model however has brought many challenges due to the diverse nature of Bodwell’s student body: multiple languages, operating systems, apps, browsers etc. In fact, from various different perspectives there have been many issues:
1. Computer bought in different country so support is difficult
2. Computer needs to be inspected to be used for provincial exams as per Ministry of Education’s requirements
1. Difficult to know what to choose to buy for the needs of Bodwell school life
2. Their son or daughter seems to be using the computer more for games than academics
1. It’s very difficult to deal with all the different IT issues in class due to the different language operating systems
2. Each computer requires different support items e.g. dongle to connect VGA to monitor or SMART Board.
1. 80% of our time is spent on 20% of the troublesome cases
2. The challenge to manage 1000+ devices of different kinds to maintain an optimized and safe school network whose purpose is mainly for academic use.
Because of these problems, the IT department proposed the following solution: a fully integrated school-wide technology platform to serve all Bodwell students and staff featuring:
-School Laptop (BHSD – Bodwell High School Device)
-Faster Wi-Fi Network
-Technical Support & Training
The Standard ICT platform will enhance:
-Team/Class Communication & Collaboration
-End User Productivity & Efficiency
-Student Learning & Parent Satisfaction
-IT Service & Support Capabilities
-Bodwell’s 2018 Technology Goals
The major benefits of the BHSD are:
In terms of communication, the standard BHSD helps support the school-wide language policy of EOP (English-Only Policy) through the deployment of a standard language (English) for all school devices. BHSD enforces EOP to all student laptops during school hours, while eliminating technical compatibility issues between the devices.
-Industry Standard Software
-Technology Support Program
BHSD delivers high-performing tools and services to support end users with their core school activities.
-Universal end user computing environment
-IT resources allocation according to importance and priority
BHSD brings enterprise-class technology experience equally to all students and staff members.
In addition to BHSD, the new policy shifts user behaviour more to using online cloud storage (OneDrive) and platforms such as Office 365 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook). This means students and staff will not necessarily need to use their BHSD to access school related work.
The next big question for the IT department was whether to select Mac or PC. Because of our use of Microsoft industry standard software such as Office and SharePoint, it made sense to go with PCs which integrate better with Bodwell’s school systems. PCs are also relatively cost-efficient and number approximately 9 out of 10 computers worldwide with MS Office being used by 90% of business users.
The computer make and model that we settled on was the BHSD Dell Latitude E5450 with the following specs:
The Main Benefits of BHSD include:
1. Better accessibility to learning with minimal downtime in classrooms – focus on what matters!
2. For Mac Users it gives them the chance to learn new skills and adapt to industry standard software
1. No risk of selecting the wrong computer (and with minimal down payment)
2. Ensure student’s laptop is optimized for learning
1. Reduced class interference due to computer problems
2. EOP enforced through BHSD
1. Stable platform, safe network and data security
2. Higher quality of service and efficient management of IT resources
Finally, I would like to acknowledge the hard work that has gone into organizing this program, especially by IT team members Steve O’Neill (IT Manager – Operations), Peter Yoon (IT Manager – Solutions), Arvid Yuen (IT Technician).