Technology Integration Plan [MASTER]
Technology Integration Plan
"Ensure that every student and educator has at least one Internet access device and appropriate software and resources for research, communication, multimedia content creation, and collaboration for use in and out of school."
~National Education Technology Plan 2010
The Technology Integration Plan includes the following components:
- Chromebooks for every student in a 1:1 initiative
- iPads for every teacher
- The ability for teachers to project wirelessly from their iPads
- Professional development for teachers
- Site-based tech coaches for continual instructional technology support
- Laptops for teachers instead of desktops, if desired
- The use of a Learning Management System (LMS) for teachers, students and parents
- Freshman Foundations course for students
- Wireless network expansion to support 1:1 and personal devices
- Branding of the network with the student focused name, Scholar+.
Dependent on budget priorities, this plan could be fully implemented for the 2013-2014 school year, making the Perris Union High School District (PUHSD) a technology integration leader within the county. Integrating technology into instruction is a significant, but necessary shift in teaching and learning for the 21st century. It is expected that there will be resistance by some teachers within the District; however, getting technology into the hands of students should be the first priority as the rest of the plan will fall in place when students begin using their devices. As Chris Lehman states, “technology should be like oxygen: ubiquitous, necessary, and invisible”. Properly implemented educational technology has shown to improve student achievement. Ubiquitous access to a device in the hands of every student along with properly implemented educational technology has shown increased student achievement. This plan reflects a student-centered focus that addresses the desired outcomes and District goals.
Background and Goals
PUHSD began piloting student devices in 2009-2010 at Choice 2000, which acquired 40 Windows netbooks for students to take home and use for their online classes. In 2011-2012 Heritage High School began a 1:1 iPad pilot with all 9th grade AVID students and expanded the program the following year for both 9th and 10th grade. Heritage has also experimented with an iPad mobile cart (40 units) and has used some dedicated classroom iPads in reading intervention and ELD classes. Teachers around the District have also been using iPads to benefit student instruction, in subject areas like English, Math, Science, Geography, ELD and Agriculture.
Through each of these pilots, the District has learned what works well and what should be avoided as we further integrate technology into instruction. In conjunction with the Educational Technology Council (ETC) and a Technology Focus Group convened specifically to address the technology integration components contained within this plan, the two groups discussed current use of technology within the District as well as a vision going forward. This included developing desired student outcomes, the use and availability of student devices, the process and infrastructure needed to deploy devices, instructional tools for teachers, required professional development, and the possible implementation for each.
Support for Common Core, College and Career Readiness
Technology should be used in classrooms every day as the students work through units of study aligned to California Common Core State Standards. Students need frequent and appropriate access to technology that allows them to learn, analyze, research and create. There is a need for students to obtain digital literacy and technology skills to address the Common Core Standards and to prepare them for college and careers. Some of those skills include basic operations, word processing, database, spreadsheets, online communication, multimedia presentation tools, web authoring, research, problem solving, digital citizenship, communication and collaboration. To address these skills PUHSD should strive to get technology into the hands of the students and the teachers as soon as possible.
Instructional Technology Demands of Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium
Several SBAC pilot administrations have demonstrated the need for students to take the assessment on a device they use in daily instruction. It is imperative that students are familiar with the technical intricacies of the device in order to better demonstrate their knowledge of the Common Core Standards. Keyboard shortcuts, mouse/trackpad settings, audio configurations, and login processes play an important part in the students’ ability to navigate the assessments. The following are Smarter Balanced Technology requirements:
- Keyboards required on all tablets
- Screen size must be 9.5 inches or larger
- Headphones required for the ELA portion of the test
- iPad requires Guided Access. (This creates management issues, burden on site admin and Technology Department, and test security issues. Sites would have to report daily which students were testing along with their devices.)
The following digital literacy skills are needed to demonstrate proficiency on the SBAC assessments and Common Core State Standards: (Fresno County Office of Education, 2013)
- Demonstrate keyboarding techniques, including the use of keyboard shortcuts, to complete assignments efficiently and accurately
- Apply advanced formatting and page layout features when appropriate (e.g., columns, templates, and styles) to improve the appearance of documents and materials
- Duplicate the structure of a database without data
- Explain and use advanced formatting features of a spreadsheet application (e.g., reposition columns and rows, add and name worksheets)
- Use search engines and online directories. Explain the differences among various search engines and how they rank results
- Use a variety of applications to plan, create, and edit multimedia products (e.g., slide presentations, videos, animations, simulations, podcasts).
The naming of the wireless network, including the branding of the LMS, will keep the use of technology focused on the students and on the desired outcomes for student and teacher use of technology. The name Scholar+ is what the students, parents, staff and community will see when they access our network and LMS. Scholar+ evokes attributes that we want in our students. Some of those attributes include being inquisitive, creative, motivated, collaborative, productive and innovative.
“One-to-one computing transforms the classroom from teacher-centered to student-centered by placing the technology in the hands of the students. No longer is the teacher the purveyor of knowledge but a facilitator, learning along with the students.”
~Alice Owen, Executive Director of Technology
Irving Intermediate School District, Irving, Texas
A 1:1 initiative is exactly what the students of PUHSD need and deserve to prepare them for the future. It would provide equitable access to learning experiences for all students and especially students in underserved populations—low-income and minority students, students with disabilities, and English language learners. The District’s 1:1 program will be student centered and focused on desired outcomes. Some of those desired outcomes are as follows:
- 24/7, personalized learning
- Provide all students with 21st century tools to do authentic work
- Collaborate and communicate effectively with peers, experts and their teachers
- Access libraries of digital content that provide multiple pathways to learning
- Pursue real-world issues and topics of deep interest
- Prepare for the future of hybrid and flipped learning.
There is convincing evidence that a properly implemented 1:1 initiative is a contributing factor to school success. PUHSD has learned from other school districts that have gone to a 1:1 model. Close to home, Riverside Unified has deployed over 20,000 devices and San Diego Unified 26,000 devices. Other exemplar 1:1 programs include Huntsville City Schools (Alabama) 23,000 students and Sunnyside Unified School District (New Mexico) 16,000 students. The District has also used research from Project Red, ISTE, NACOL and International Society for Technology in Education to support the use of 1:1 technology integration as a key component to increasing student engagement and achievement.
Based on lessons learned during the various pilots throughout the District, combined with feedback from other districts on student devices and challenges faced with those devices, Google Chromebooks will be the best device for PUHSD students for the following reasons:
- Tight integration with Google Apps for document creation, collaboration, storage
- Long battery life (6-8 hours in testing)
- Physical keyboard
- Low risk, stable operating system (no viruses or malware, updates are non-intrusive)
- No interior moving parts to break over time (fans, spinning hard drives)
- Easy setup - student just has to login. No imaging, software distribution, management server registration etc. before they can start using device.
In addition, because the cost of Chromebooks is relatively inexpensive as compared to alternative devices, adopting Chromebooks will allow the District to get more devices into the hands of students sooner.
400 Chromebooks have been purchased for AVID students at Heritage (all grades) to replace their current student iPads. This will allow for the refurbishment and redistribution of iPads to teachers (see next section). Chromebooks for the remainder of the students throughout the District will cost approximately $2.8 million. This includes devices for the projected 2013-2014 student enrollment of 9,303, plus an additional 4% or 372 devices. This will allow for seamless operation in the case of loss or damage to devices during the school year, use by substitute teachers, and for enrollment increases.
The following is a breakdown of Chromebooks to be purchased by school site:
Pinacate Middle School
Perris High School
Paloma Valley High School
Heritage High School
Perris Lake High School
Chromebooks would be inventoried and distributed to schools where they will be checked out to students by library staff using the same process used for textbooks in the fall. The roll-out plan will allow students at the comprehensive high schools to take their devices home. Initially, students at Pinacate, Perris Lake and the Academy would not be permitted to take their devices home. Working with site administration, a plan will be created to select how and where the devices could be stored. Some suggestions would be that the device could be stored within 1st period classes, in a home-room model where students return to home-room at the conclusion of the day, or teachers could be given class sets.
Learning Management System
A Learning Management System (LMS) was recently adopted for teachers to have the ability to post course content. Beginning in 2013-2014, students will also have access to the LMS. They will be able to use their device to access the LMS to learn, interact, collaborate, turn in work, take tests and quizzes, and create innovative projects. Students will have the ability to create and post work for project-based learning on the LMS. They will also be able to use Google Apps for Education to create documents, spreadsheets and presentations. Also, students will be able to access online textbooks when available, perform research at anytime, and use the resources PUHSD provides for innovation and creativity as they prepare for college and careers. Students will be able to do all these things inside and outside of class.
In the future, the LMS would allow PUHSD to create online/hybrid courses. Students could have the ability to take coursework in a flexible and blended model. There would be a potential for student schedules to be a mix of traditional seat-based courses along with online courses taught by the District’s highly qualified teachers. Course requirements of face-to-face time, assessments, in-class labs and other specifics will vary depending on the course. This model has been extremely successful at Riverside Unified School District with over 22,500 semester course enrollments surpassed since beginning this model.
Student and Parent Success
Building foundational skills are necessary for students to be successful in high school. A freshman foundations class can allow students to obtain technology skills as well as other skills, such as note taking, organization, problem solving, critical thinking and career readiness. Some of the technology skills are basic operations, word processing, database, spreadsheets, online communication, multimedia presentation tools, web authoring, research, problem solving, digital citizenship, communication and collaboration. Other districts within the county have models for this type of course, or similar courses that could serve as a starting point for PUHSD.
Parent Technology Orientation
It is necessary that parents and guardians understand and can support the student use of technology. A parent technology orientation component could cover elements of this plan and include other elements. The orientation will take place at the school sites and cover student use of Chromebooks on campus and in the home, the LMS, and Google Apps for Education. The orientation can cover Infinite Campus and Alert Now. Education on social media and cyber safety will also be required.
iPads for Teachers
iPads are excellent tools in the hands of teachers. Teachers can create interactive lessons, record those lessons either ahead of time or during instruction, and post them on the LMS for students to access at any time. Teachers can also use the iPad to deliver engaging instruction, and to use proximity while teaching rather than being trapped at a computer behind a desk. iPads can also be used by teachers to take attendance, check grades, and can be used to individually review student performance and achievement from any location in the class or on campus.
There are approximately 300 student use iPads at HHS. A plan is already in place to replace those student use iPads with Chromebooks, redistributing the iPads, along with additional iPads purchased, to every teacher in the District who would use it in daily instruction. The iPads would be distributed before the end of the 2012-2013 school year to provide teachers the opportunity to use iPads in their classroom and over the summer in preparation for the 2013-2014 school year. Professional development will also be provided prior to the rollout, and ongoing. The cost for the additional iPads and the replacement Chromebooks is approximately $150,000.
Apple TV’s or Air Server software for Wireless Projection
iPads have the ability to “AirPlay”. That is to say iPads can be connected wirelessly to a classroom projector. The ability to use the iPad and project lessons is great for addressing the different learning styles such as visual/spatial and help students create a mental model of difficult concepts. To accomplish this, an Apple TV device would be purchased for all classrooms where the teacher uses a laptop, and Air Server software would be installed on all desktop computers, each allowing the iPad screen to be projected on the screen in the classroom. The cost for the hardware or software needed for wireless projection is estimated to be $50,000.
Computer Refresh Program
In Summer 2011 PUHSD implemented a Computer Refresh Program (CRP) to address ongoing problems with aging equipment that was negatively impacting the instructional environment. The intention was to use the CRP to replace roughly 20% of supported computers per year and to ensure each was less than 5 years old at all times. The CRP was postponed in 2012 due to budget concerns, but it is being revived for the 2013-2014 school year and expanded to allow instructional staff the option to choose a desktop or laptop, as well as a choice of operating systems (Windows 7 or Mac OS). A survey will be made available for all instructional staff to present those options, and desktop computers replaced with laptops under this wave of the CRP will be used to replace older computers in use by support staff around the District.
This is a fundamental shift in teaching and learning, and as such, proper support should be put in place. A full continuum of professional development opportunities must be offered for staff on the use of educational technology. This is necessary in order for this Technology Integration Plan to be successful and to achieve the desired outcomes and District goals. The professional development plan will follow a blended learning theory model to meet the needs of teachers. Together with Educational Services, the Technology Department will need to develop trainings in the form of face-to-face training, virtual training (Google Hangouts), and self-paced modules (Haiku LMS). Teachers will need to receive training on the iPad, LMS, Chromebooks, SBAC, AirPlay, Google Apps, screencasting, and iOS Apps for education. These trainings can also build upon the strengths of our current AVID instructional practices of Writing, Inquiry, Collaboration, Organization, and Reading.
It is anticipated that as part of a balanced PD program, the district will need to provide the traditional hands-on professional development sessions. This would be 2 full days of instructional technology trainings that will be held over the summer in order to get as many teachers trained as possible. The voluntary trainings would be geared toward setting teachers up for success using the educational technology tools outlined in this plan. Additional trainings would be offered throughout the year, perhaps through the Best Practices Workshops hosted by Educational Services. The approximate cost for trainings throughout 2013-2014 is $400,000.
Site-Based Technology Coaches
It will also be imperative that teachers and site administrators be provided with in-class/onsite support in the form of site level technology coaches. Schools need PD sessions held on their campuses by site-based teachers as well as daily instructional technology support. Site-based technology coaches are an integral component in providing services to teachers and administration in this model. It is recommended that the master schedule reflect release periods for technology coaches as follows:
- 3 periods at Perris High, Paloma Valley and Heritage
- 2 periods at Pinacate
- 1 period each at The Academy and Perris Lake.
The site-based technology coaches will work in conjunction, and with support and direction from the District’s Teacher On Special Assignment over Instructional Technology as well as site administration and Educational Services. These site-based technology coaches will sit on the Educational Technology Council (ETC), be technology liaisons between schools and the District Office, lead PD sessions at their schools, communicate regularly with school administration, contribute to the District’s technology plan, and work to support the integration of educational technology.
The cost for site-based technology coaches will likely be absorbed within the anticipated overstaffing that currently exists. The coaches would be selected by the site principal, in conjunction with Educational Services and Technology.
Network and Internet Capabilities
We currently have wireless networking (WiFi) installed throughout our schools but the current design was installed to provide coverage, not support high-density 1:1 use. A plan has been developed to expand the WiFi network to meet the requirements of a 1:1 initiative. The WiFi network will be secure enough to support a Bring Your Own Technology (BYOT) program. This means that staff and students can bring their personal devices and easily connect them to Scholar+. As an example, if a student has a full laptop or a tablet device that they would rather use instead of our Chromebook they may do so. In order to support this program it is imperative that we focus on providing services that are web-based and device agnostic - students and staff need to be able to access the services we provide anytime, anywhere, from any device, and without the burden of needing to first install software.
The estimated cost to expand the wireless network among all District sites is $500,000. The expansion could be completed during Summer 2013 if begun in June directly after graduation.
Funding and Implementation
The total cost to implement the technology integration plan is $3.9 million. The wireless network expansion can be paid for out of facilities funding, leaving $3.4 million currently unfunded. Although this cost is not currently in the budget, if each school site, along with their school site council, believes student devices and technology integration is a priority, then the increased categorical allocations from 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 can be used to cover this cost. Furthermore, if no textbooks, or a limited amount, can be purchased in 2013-2014, monies typically allocated to textbooks can be redirected to help cover the cost. If PUSHD were to immediately become a 1:1 district, alternative ways of providing textbooks can and should be explored, including the use of open source textbooks.
In order for the 1:1 initiative to be most impactful and powerful to effect student achievement, it is highly recommended that students take ownership of the program by having the ability to take their device to and from school. This will allow student to gain a familiarity and gain competency using their device, and allow students to access PUHSD resources any time. A roll-out of devices in cart will be less impactful and could hinder proper implementation.
Should the District be unable to fully fund the Technology Integration Plan, a phased approach to student devices can be taken. However, it will be important that other components of the plan (iPads, wireless projection, LMS, site technology coaches, wireless expansion and professional development) move forward for technology integration in any capacity. It should also be noted, there are inherent problems with phasing the implementation. Mainly, any level of partial implementation will create an undesirable inequity among students.
The priority, and first area of implementation should be Chromebooks at the high schools. This would ideally be with a full 1:1 model. Alternatively, Chromebook carts could be purchased to create as many mobile class sets as possible. As more devices can be purchased, enough for full high school 1:1 implementation, the carts could be surplused. Chromebooks could certainly be implemented by grade level; however, while this creates a smaller scale 1:1 environment, it prevents equitable access to technology for all students. Mobile carts would provide all students with access, albeit more limited access, but it would build capacity and set the foundation for all students to eventually have their own devices.
The second priority for implementation should be for Pinacate Middle School. However, some mobile carts should be purchased for 2013-2014 so students and teachers have exposure to their use until such time as they too can become fully 1:1. The final priority would be for devices at the alternative education sites.
Project RED (Revolutionizing EDucation) compiled research that shows the annual national financial impact of technology transformation. The study shows a net savings of $459 per student annually when schools went to a 1:1 model. Some of those savings were due to teacher attendance increases ($13), curriculum savings ($17), supplemental materials ($31), copy machine ($40), paperwork reduction ($60), and reduction in end-of-course failure ($17). Based on this data, a 1:1 program should be viewed as an investment, not an expense.
The components within this plan can also be implemented at CMI and Choice 2000. This can be done in whole or in part, but would need to be funded by the individual schools. The charter schools would however receive implementation support from the District.