While much of the work of the technology department is related to day-to-day technical support, we always have a number of major projects to work on as well. Below, you will find descriptions of some of the major projects that we’ve recently completed, as well as some of the projects that we are currently (or will soon be) working on.
Recently Completed Projects
Internal Web Applications: In an effort to improve efficiency and reduce paperwork, the technology department has been working on an ongoing program to develop user-friendly web applications for the use of internal departments. Since the spring of 2008, the technology department has developed an online facilities support ticket system, a registration management system for the District Office, and a web-based report card system for Carlisle Elementary and Hartford Upper Elementary, and an online technology support system. Further, the department designed and implemented the web-based management system that faculty and staff use to update information on the District website, including information related to classes, libraries, guidance information, and human resources. Additional projects are currently underway and scheduled to be deployed for the 2010-2011 school year.
Moodle eClassroom System: Carlisle’s Moodle-based eClassroom system was developed during the 2008-2009 school year, with extensive time devoted to faculty and staff training in its use. During the 2009-2010 school year, Moodle was fully deployed throughout the high school, with most high school courses accompanied by an online Moodle page where teachers can collect and evaluate assignments and quizzes, create discussion boards to encourage student discussions, and allow for collaborative group work on interactive wiki pages. Moodle is a free, open-source software solution and is being developed, hosted, and maintained by our in-house technology department.
Wireless Network Deployment: In December, 2008, the technology department completed the deployment of a district-wide wireless communication network, which provides a secure network for staff access, and a network for guest and student internet access. A small expansion during the 2009-2010 school year supplemented our existing coverage, giving us adequate coverage throughout nearly every part of each of the district’s buildings. Further efforts to upgrade and expand coverage will be made as needs and traffic load expand.
District Website Development: The technology department designed this district website completely in-house, with development beginning in earnest in July of 2008, leading to the website’s launch in November of 2008. The site allows faculty and staff members to update information directly to the site via a user-friendly content management system, and the internally-managed and developed site allows for much greater control over the structure of the site. No money was spent on consulting, design, or hosting fees in completing this project.
Faculty/Staff Laptop Program: All teachers, along with a number of other staff members, were provided with laptop computers during the summer of 2008. This program costs roughly the same amount as our previous desktop-based approach to providing computers to faculty and staff, but allows for much greater mobility and efficiency, both inside and outside of the classroom. Further, the laptop program has helped the technology department improve support response time and efficiency, while reducing the number of pieces of equipment that must be maintained (through the elimination of separate monitors, keyboards, and mice).
Classroom Technology Integration: The district will be using funding from a statewide settlement with Microsoft Corporation to pay for purchase of and training for classroom technologies, including interactive whiteboards, document cameras, digital projectors, and other technologies. These purchases and related training will be made prior to and during the 2010-2011 school year.
Renovation Planning: The technology department is working to ensure that technology needs will be met effectively and efficiently during the implementation of school renovation projects that are currently taking place (beginning in 2009) with further renovations to come between now and the 2012-2013 school year. Top priorities include solidifying and upgrading our data network, and effective deployment of multimedia technologies in classrooms.