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We share our tech-support person among the five schools in our school district when he is not driving the bus for field trips. Tech support may take weeks due to the disbursement of tasks and locations for this one man. Most classes have one to five computers. Our K-4 school does not have a computer lab nor any space or current resources for one.
Daly City, California
We have more than 300 computers at our elementary school; 80 percent of them are Apples three to ten years old. I have a day and a half built into my weekly schedule to service computers and printers and provide networking and software support for teachers. Each of the forty-two classroom teachers has his or her own inkjet printer, and we are refilling cartridges for fifteen of those printers to both save money and alleviate the empty-cartridge waste problem that plagues the environment.
Math-prep and team technology leader
Alas, my IT department is more concerned about "protecting" the network than about allowing teachers and students to use these tools to improve learning. I have little or no control over these tools and must request permission to use them. It is most frustrating, given that I know how to use them.
Michael J. Lowry
The McCallie School
A team of volunteers provides all our tech support. We can call on them whenever we need help. We have access to an online collaborative workspace, courtesy of icohere, which provides us with training and support and works closely with us to develop more refined ways to use the workspace. In addition, we have a team of volunteers who work every Saturday morning to maintain and upgrade the software and hardware throughout the school. Many of our computers came to us through matching donations from IBM, and one of our volunteers carefully researched those we purchased to get the best price. We have a sophisticated system that serves our staff and students well, thanks to the work of our devoted volunteer technical "staff." We could never do it without them!
The Meher Schools
We have one very knowledgeable teacher who has been trained to serve as the tech-support person for our building. She can work out almost any problem we are up against. When all else fails, she can call in the computer-tech guy from the school district who services and maintains our lab and classroom computers.
Brooke County School District
Follansbee, West Virginia
In our school system, we have strategic planning, excellent plan implementation, and just-in-time and reactive types of tech support. We are always friendly and provide service with a smile, but we struggle with a ratio of 1 computer technician to 550 computer workstations. Last time I checked, the national average was about 1 to 72.
Joseph B. Coccimiglio
Coordinator of technology
Poquoson City Public Schools
I have thirty-eight computers in my library with a full district tech staff that loads, re-images, and deals with all technology in our district.
Library media specialist
I am in a new school with new labs, many new computers, and only one hard-working techie to set it all up. He was not consulted on most of the purchases, so we have labs without printers -- the ever-present disconnect between tech and education. We need printers -- any extras out there?
English teacher and department chair
Eastern Greene High School
We have a four-person tech team: One at the helm, three under her. All work together to oversee all aspects of our one-to-one laptop program. Also, students can sign onto a course in which they learn how to fix and service their laptops. Ours is an all-girl private school with an enrollment of 700.
Queen of Peace High School
We are a technical/vocational school. We probably have more computers in one school than most school districts have throughout. We have a full program called Networking with an excellent instructor who builds his team of students into our tech support each year. We also have a part-time paid former student who comes in a few hours a day while attending college. I am not that tech savvy and I don't know how any nontech school does it. If we had to rely on the district office, we would be unable to do the great things we do for students here.
Leadership and management in business instructor
Puget Sound Skills Center
We have a twenty-five hour technology teaching assistant, a full-time tech facilitator, and a full-time certified LMS/teacher. All three share the tech support for the building, along with many other responsibilities. We have an online tech request form and whoever is able to complete the task the soonest, takes the request.
Windsor Elementary School
Arlington Heights, Illinois
At my school, there is a full-time tech support person. He troubleshoots and repairs any computer problems in the building, installs new equipment, and is a liaison to the county-office level tech support department. Additionally, when new technology becomes available, teachers go to the computer lab during their planning period, and he demonstrates ways to incorporate the new technology into our classrooms and presentations. These lessons also provide technology credits that are needed for recertification.
East Montgomery High School
Biscoe, North Carolina
Our technology team is three in a million. They've created an atmosphere where everybody, staff and student alike, feels comfortable asking for help. With novices they are patient and understanding. With the tech-savvy they are supportive and responsive. Individual requests are added to a task schedule which is made available to all staff and lets us know when various jobs are scheduled to be done. New programs and updates are thoroughly introduced in staff training sessions and crises are handled with unflappable efficiency and good humor.
Elizabeth Tombler, Betsy Buell, and Lynn Hotz
St. Philip's Academy
Newark, New Jersey
Providing quality tech support is critical for success of the kind of technology program we want to have at our school, so we budget for and hire a world-class tech-support system, staffed by technology coordinators, facilitators, and specialists in all areas of hardware and software. Our help desk can quickly respond to tech problems, but it's even more important that we are able to provide one-on-one and just-in-time training to teachers who want to learn to help themselves.
Director of technology
American Embassy School
New Delhi, India
We are fortunate to have a Computer Teacher and a Technology Coordinator at our school. Both provide day-to-day hardware and software tech support, including resolving minor network issues. They also conduct professional development workshops for our faculty. For major network issues, we have an outside consultant under contract. This combination seems to work best for us.
Saint Joseph High School
Brooklyn, New York
We have a 1-to-1 ratio of computers, as well as video conferencing (polycom), Skype, Moodle, and various other support for technology. Each teacher has a projection machine, VCR, DVD, and numerous PC-based and Mac-based computers that we use daily. Thanks to a wonderful tech-support person, we have a server that is up and running consistently, laptops with the latest software, and possibilities listened to. Thanks to this leadership, I feel very supported in technology and helping our kids succeed.
Highland Tech High Charter School
Our system has a designated tech-support person who serves one high school, its contributing middle schools, and their contributing elementary schools. The office is at the high school, and the consultant is available by phone or email.
Guillen Middle School
El Paso Texas
At a high school with four computer labs and two computers in each class (about eighty rooms), mostly PCs, we have no Wi-Fi, 10/100 LAN, and a sixteen-hour-per-week tech. Support requests may take, and have taken, over a year to address. Those who use Macs have no tech support but, thankfully, knowledgeable colleagues who can advise. Financially, we have no support for repairs or upgrades.
Santa Rosa, California
Because the school district cut all the media tech specialist, right now -- yikes! -- we are forming our own tech committee. We have several tech TOSAs and media specialist, but they manage ten-plus schools and we do not see them with regularity. We have lots of hardware and software that we feel is wasted by testing and retesting. Collectively, we are working on it, but some of us are using less and less technology due to lack of support. Another teacher and I are fortunate to be part of a federal grant and we receive much more support than most other staff in our middle school of 1,200 students; but the grant ends in a year and we are scrambling to get access and support to engage our students in their realm.
Seventh- and eighth-grade language arts and social studies teacher
Sunrise Middle School
Our tech support is limited to a repair division that we can call if our computers stop working. We are looking for innovative ways to get support for our technology.
Los Angeles Unified School District
Los Angeles, California
Our Tech leader conducts humanities classes, teaches documentary film making and service learning project design, and maintains our computer lab and four mobile laptop carts. All students have a personalized desktop page and blog for posting their work.
Karen L. Thomas
Constitution High School
We have great tech support provided by caring people who understand how the services they provide impact the learning environment. We have one in-house tech support person who serves approximately 1,100 students and eighty members. She helps us maintain worn out equipment, addresses concerns promptly, and is wonderful with students. Our district's tech support staff is guided by a man with incredible patience and a vision for how technology can enrich the classroom while working miracles with a limited budget. They are my unsung heroes!
E.T. Richardson Middle School
Springfield School District
In our preK-12 independent school, we have four technology coordinators, one for each division (primary, lower, middle, and upper). In addition to our chief information officer, we have an academic technology integrator, a network administrator, a Webmaster, and a systems analyst. The technology coordinators are the main resource for the faculty in each division, supported by the academic technology integrator. The other technology staff members provide the technical support and expertise to ensure that the equipment, network, and software all function properly, allowing faculty members to easily incorporate technology into their curriculum and day-to-day activities.
Lower school technology coordinator
Glenelg Country School
Ellicott City, Maryland
We set our goal early in our development plan to have on-site tech support at each of our campuses. Teachers can focus on teaching and learning because they trust their building tech support person to keep staff laptops, student laptops, classroom video projectors and AV systems, computer labs, and the LAN operating reliably.
Noble Network of Charter Schools/Northwestern University Settlement Association
At our 180-student high school alternative program, the tech support is provided by students and alumni. Students designed and installed the first LAN sixteen years ago and the district has allowed us to let them maintain that since then. Students recruit others to follow in their footsteps and alumni in the area help with larger problems. The total support becomes a little spotty at times, as new waves of students learn what they have to know to keep things running; but the value of all students knowing their peers are providing this service, and the ownership of the responsibility for the equipment (plus the skills the student admins learn), are worth the trade off.
Teacher and director
Linworth Alternative Program
Worthington City Schools
Our district provides minimal tech support. We have a computer tech person in our building but she is also responsible for two other buildings and I rarely see her in our building. When we have a computer problem we tell a secretary who makes an electronic note and passes it along to the tech person. On the positive side, we got new computers this year and we are going to have our grading system on the Web in the fall, which means we can work on grading from home.Linda Gaither
Science department chairperson
Fort Zumwalt North High School
With 190 lab, classroom, and office computers, two campuses, two networks,and peripherals, our tech staff numbers three. They develop and maintain the two-campus network expansion and change printer cartridges. They are working to increase staff productivity through education and applications and will work closely with our communication office.
Director of development
Indian Creek School
We have a technology specialist at our school that provides computer instruction in grade-appropriate applications and Internet. We also have a computer tech that visits our school to deal with technology issues as needed. Unfortunately, it is not always in a timely manner. I have a classroom computer that was checked out more than four months ago and found to have battery issues that have not been resolved yet. I also have a laptop with screen damage that was turned in to the tech over two months ago that has not even been looked at yet. We do have computers in all of our classrooms; just not all computers are up to date.