Friday, July 12, 2013

Sharing Don't Come Easy: Especially with iPads

Notes from Session at iPadpalooza

Presenter: Mary Ray, District Instructional Technology Specialist, East Central ISD

Session Website:

Session  Description: Deploying iPads in a shared environment can be a tricky feat! East Central ISD Director of Technology Operations, Miguel Guhlin and District Instructional Technology Specialist, Mary Ray share lessons learned, obstacles and successes with regards to East Central ISD's current iPad pilot, EC3.

East Central’s Story:

  •  East Central ISD launched the EC3 iPad Program in the Fall of 2012.
  • The program was the Superintendent’s idea. 
  • Cohort 1 
    • participants were 14 teachers from 7 different campuses 
    • 450 iPads were distributed
  • Cohort 2 
    • will launch in the Fall of 2013 
    • will expand the number of participants to 38 teachers from 9 different campuses 
    •  694 iPads are projected to be distributed
  • Principals choose teachers who will participate in cohorts

Goal of Program:

  • Provide students with engaged learning opportunities that not only transform delivery, assessment and differentiate the delivery of instruction, but change how students and staff create, collaborate, communicate, as well as develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills in a globally connected environment.

Cohort 1 Classroom Inventory:
  • Each classroom received the following inventory
o   1 teacher iPad
o   1 VersaVu iPad case
o   1 MacBook Pro
o   1 Spectrum Charging/Syncing Cart
o   25-35 student iPads (# depended on grade level)
o   25-35 Kensington Blackbelt iPad cases (# depended on grade level)
o   1 external hard drive (for computer back up)
o   1 VGA Adapter for teacher iPad

Cohort 1 App Inventory:
  • Paid Apps
o   Keynote
o   Office2HD
  • Free Apps
o   Edmodo
o   Google Drive
o   Documents by Readdle

Cohort 1 Professional Development:
  • Spring & Fall 2012 - Biweekly 'Appy Hour sessions
o   iPad 101
o   Email on the iPad
o   App Evaluation
o   Webclips
o   Edmodo
o   Google Drive
  • June 2012 - EC3 Teacher Academy (4 days)
o   Commitment Letter/Teacher Expectations
o   SAMR Model
o   Content Creation vs Content Consumption
o   Product-based learning
  • August 2012 - PreLaunch Day
o   Equipment Checkout
o   Cart Management - Charging/Syncing
o   Apple Configurator
  • October 2012 - March 2013
o   Three (3) Consultant Days
  • June 2013
o   One (1) day registration to ISTE

Classroom Learning Activity Rubric:
  • See website for rubric

Classroom Management Tips:

  •  Log in, Log out.Train your students to log out of apps before closing them. Allow time at the beginning and end of each class period for logging in and out of accounts.
  • Do not allow individual students to set up their email accounts in the Mail app.
  • "Personalize" as much as you can.Number your iPads and assign students to the same iPad each day. 
  • Provide options for saving content created in apps. 

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Not 1:1? There's still hope in implementing iPads

Notes from Session at iPadpalooza 

Presenter: Sandy Kendell, Educational Technology Specialist, Georgetown ISD

Session  Description: iPad infused and enriched teaching and learning can take place even if you can’t put an iPad into the hands of every teacher and student in your school. Kim and Sandy will share the organization and outcomes of various iPad implementation models that were piloted at campuses across Georgetown ISD during the 2012-2013 school year, including how we planned, provided professional development, managed iPads and iTunes accounts, and lessons learned from our experiences.

Session Website:

Resource Documents: 

Lessons Learned:

1. PD is necessary
·         Even for basics

2. iPads are hard to share - but it's doable
·         Think about how you are going to get images and files off the iPad.
·         Will you be using email, dropbox, etc?

3. Teachers need their own iPads
·         They need one they can experiment with and use personally.
·         They have to get used to the technology first and learn how to adapt it for themselves.

4. Follow up with teachers frequently
·         Plan for time to talk with the teachers and not just by phone

5. Space out implementations

6. Consistent iPad names are critical
·         If you haven't thought about a naming convention, you need to

7. Apple IDs can be messy
·         Teachers have an apple ID through their district email account.
·         Teachers can't use a personal apple ID on a district device.
·         Reason: If apps are purchased by the district, then they would be lost if downloaded on a personal account.

8. Think through distribution and pick-up

9. Clearly communicate the Why and the How

10. Major iOS updates are never convenient

Stages of Implementation at Georgetown ISD:

#1: Title I Schools
·         Each school gets 13 iPads each
·         Focused on reading and math intervention students and those were the teachers that were trained
·         This is where the first pd came in; 6 hours total; first 3 hours on basics
·         The team went out to see what the teachers were already doing in the classroom first
·         They picked some basic apps to set up on ipads for them
·         The teachers did not have their own ipad (they shared) and they were using their own personal apple id's

#2 Various Schools Purchase Small Sets
·         Usually between 5 to 15 iPads
·         Started with elementariness and middle schools

#3 An iPad for Every Teacher
·         The team met face to face with each teacher for at least an hour to show basics
·         All other training is online
·         If teacher is not comfortable with online, they could request face to face training
·         They don't have any carts to manage the iPads at the campus level
·         iPads must be dedicated and teacher must have dependable access to them

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Legislative Update - June 2013

Below are my notes from TCEA's Legislative Update Webinar I attended on June 20, 2013

Legislative Update
June 20, 2013
A.    Funding

·         Some funding has been restored

·         Enrollment growth has been funded

·         An additional 3.4 billion of the 5.4 lost in 2011 has been restored


B.    IMA

·         $423,062,452 budgeted for each year of the next biennium for a total of $846,124,904

·         HB 5 was signed into law and allows districts to use their IMA funds prior to Sept 1st if vendor is okay with payment after Sept. 1st

·         Funds must be first encumbered

·         June 30th is the estimated date that districts will receive word about how much IMA funding they will receive

·         If you still have IMA funding, it will roll over and will be added to the new appropriations

·         The new IMA funds will primarily be used for  Proclamation 2014 (Math, Sci, Tech Apps)

·         Next summer is primarily when a lot of the new adoptions/purchases will occur

·         Many district will be saving a lot of their IMA money to purchase for the 2014-2015 school year

·         IMA Expenditure Table


C.     House Bill 5

·         HB 5 was passed into law

·         It deals with graduation plans and assessment plans

·         It eliminated the 4x4 and created endorsement:

o   Business and Industry

o   Arts and Humanities

o   STEM

o   Public Services

o   Multi-disciplinary

·         TCEA’s Amendments:

o   Insure “technology applications “and computer science can be included in endorsement

§   TEA will decide which courses will be used

o   Add technology applications to definition of applied stem course definition

o   Include technology applications in requirement for SBOE to create applied math courses (from CTE or TA)

o   Add “digital learning environment” to district assessment

o   Allows students to take 2 courses in computer programming languages instead of 2 foreign language courses (however, most colleges still require 2 foreign languages – counselors need to be aware of this)

·         Tech Apps for Math Credit:

o   AP Computer Science

o   Robotics

o   Discreet Math (if passed by SBOE and allow Computer Science certified teachers to teach it)


D.    Other Technology Related Bills

·         Tech Apps Certification Bill

o   HB3573 (Aycock and Patrick) - Effective Immediately

§  Allows TA Certificate holders to teach 2 CTE Courses

§  Principles of Art, audio/video technology and communications

§  Principles of information technology

·         Technology Applications Bill

o   HB 2201 – Effective 9/1/2013

§  Adds technology applications to list SBOE can choose from when determining which courses can count as a fourth math credit

·         Professional Development Bill

o   HB642 – Effective 9/1/2013

§  Gives SBEC the ability to require up to 25% of CPEs credit and the integration of technology y is included in the list

·         Virtual Learning/Broadband Bill

o   HB 1926 - Effective Immediately

§  Opens up the TxVSN to private entities to be course providers

§  Districts have discretion on which provider can offer their students courses

§  Districts can deny access (pay for)

·         If districts offers a substantially similar course

·         If a student wants to take more than 3 yearlong courses

§  Would set up system to allow out of state schools to offer courses

§  You have to send something home yearly regarding the options available to students for virtual learning

§  HB 1926 also requires TEA to conduct study on school district’s broadband capabilities

·         Digital Learning Bills

o   HCR 104 – Governor has signed

§  A non-binding resolution that encourage school districts to adopt policies that promote the use of technology and technological devices in classrooms

o   HB 2824 – Governor vetoed

§  Allows the High Performing Schools Consortium to pilot education reform initiatives and digital learning is included


E.     What’s Next?

·         Special Session

o   So far no education related issued if some are, then will respond if there is a change to advance our legislative platform

·         Interim

o   Work on implementation of passed legislations:


§  TEA

§  Educate and inform on new rules, etc.

o   Begin laying groundwork for next session:

§  Broadband

§  Computer Science

§  Funding

§  ETC.


F.     Certifications

·         Refer to Proposed Certification document

·         SBEC met on May 3rd to approve certification for Technology Application courses


G.    Federal Items

·         Rep. Miller’s Legislation (Not law yet)

o   Provide funds for state competitive grants for pd and equipment

o   Provide funds for federal competitive:

§  Individualized  learning

§  Improve teacher and school leadership

§  Provide access for at-risk student populations

·         Connect Ed (President Obama)

o   Connect 99% of America’s students with broadband and high-speed wireless in schools and libraries

o   Focus some funds from the ESEA act for teacher training

o   Build on private-sector innovation

o   Erate will probably move always from phone service and go to broadband

o   Districts should start moving to VOIP, if they haven’t already

o   There will be a session at ISTE on the new Erate on Wednesday