Need to notify your school community on the fly? Mass notification systems are an easy way to do this (see our coverage of this topic in Administrator). The new NetSupport Notify desktop alert mass notification system sends instant alerts across a LAN or WAN. Unlike most LAN-based messaging solutions, NetSupport Notify provides a dedicated notification gateway that allows the message to be delivered across multiple network segments without network modifications or switch configuration.
Schools are all about the research, so CTB/McGraw-Hill released a white paper that highlights the benefits of technology-enhanced formative and interim assessments, including CTB/McGraw-Hill’s Acuity suite of assessments, in supporting student achievement. “Promoting Student Achievement Using Research-Based Assessment with Formative Benefits,” delves into independent research studies to show that technology-enhanced formative assessment can be an effective solution to accelerate student performance and meet achievement goals -- including low-performing students.
Want to start a one-to-one program, but not sure how to get started? The Center for Digital Education and MPC Gateway released the K-12 2.0: A Complete Guide to One-to-One Computing in the K-12 Environment. The handbook includes expert information and real-world examples about designing and supporting one-to-one programs. K-12 2.0 features results and analyses of successful and replicable one-to-one deployments from across the nation, and offers guidance on budgeting for one-to-one initiatives and potential funding streams. Professional development and classroom management tips also included.
Teachers love to integrate video clips into lessons, but managing all that media can get unwieldy. Discovery Education’s new MediaShare web-based media management service allows administrators, media specialists and teachers to upload, correlate, manage, and distribute user-created or licensed digital content. Using MediaShare, educators can upload content to either locally hosted servers or to Discovery Education servers, allowing teachers, parents and students to access digital content from anywhere. Once content is uploaded, administrators have the flexibility to set sharing permissions to ensure users have the correct level of access to digital assets.
Just half a year after its launch, Weidenhammer has updated its flagship alio software suite for schools to provide administrators with more ways to streamline the human resources aspects of a school or district. Version 8.2 not only includes automated processing of employee W-2 and vendor 1099 forms, but adds a section on handling and tracking grants. Staffers will likely find that the software’s new variable column format gives them more control over the program and the ability to create more meaningful reports.
Were you one of 2007’s 23,000 applicants vying for e--rate funding? See how you match up with the other schools submitting in a new Funds For Learning report titled, "The Average E-rate Applicant." In this report, Funds For Learning creates a profile of the average E-rate applicant based on funding requests received for the 2007 Funding Year, looking at issues like site averages, funding request averages, and average request by category.
HP had three big announcements, but I can only tell you about two (the last biggie comes on tax day, April 15, so stay tuned).
The first is a mobile thin client computer – which means everything, even the operating system, is delivered to the thin client, but stored on the school network. This makes the HP Compaq 6720t Mobile Thin Client more secure, easy to update, and green-friendly since they require less energy than a traditional notebook. Although your IT folks will have to help get these up and running, teachers and admins should like it with a little training.
The other news is an online community being developed “By Teachers, For Teachers.” HP is asking for the help of teachers to share their lesson plans videos, projects, and more to populate the Teacher Experience Exchange site with content and develop an online community. The official launch will be June-ish, but teachers can hop on now to send their ideas.
Link to Lessons, Leapfrog’s database of preK-2 lessons, is now online. Teachers can find more than 6000 skill-based, standards-aligned activities for individualized instruction and tracking student progress. This is the news I can tell you about. There is a much bigger announcement – but I’m sworn to secrecy until Monday, so check back then!
Qwizdom, known best for the student response systems, has added a new online content sharing digital learning network – and it’s FREE. Qwizdom Connect gives educators quick access to peer-created materials, along with reporting features, thousands of images and other media, games, and more. Teachers can quickly make their favorite lesson interactive, share it with their peers, and even make a quiz.
As schools begin to get more pressure to offer credit recovery and intervention programs at the high school level, Compass reponds by offering a new program to support secondary market. The high school Odyssey program integrates its management and assessment features into eight core subjects, ranging from Algebra to U.S. Government.