The Information Technology Department supports all district technology and services. We are responsible for the infrastructure, business applications, educational systems, systems integration, and technical support on all of our campuses.
Whether your family chooses face-to-face in-person instruction with the distance learning contingency, or the Clarkston Virtual program, we are proud to share that the Clarkston Board of Education recently approved a 1:1 technology program in which all Clarkston Community Schools students and teachers will be provided a district-owned device for the 2020-2021 school year.
- Device Standardization
- This reduces the level of support required for learning from home.
- Filtering – Monitoring – Classroom Management
- District owned devices can be filtered to comply with CIPA (Children’s Internet Protection Act).
- Monitoring for social and emotional wellbeing.
- Classroom Management such as a teacher being able to lock students to a specific website or application while teaching to reduce distractions.
- Seamless pivoting within the State of Michigan phases
- Removing technology as a barrier to teaching and learning.
- Providing minimal disruption between phases
- Health and well-being while at school
- Removes the need to institute cleaning protocols of ChromeBooks multiple times per day, per cart, per device.
Devices for students
- All students in Young Fives – 1st grade will receive an iPad (whether they are enrolled in Clarkston Virtual or Face-to-Face/Distance Learning)
- Students in 2nd – 12th grade will receive a ChromeBook (whether they are enrolled in Clarkston Virtual or Face-to-Face/Distance Learning)
- Special Education students will receive an iPad or ChromeBook as their team works to determine which one is best for the individual student.
- The district will not be supplying headphones or mice with the devices.
Filtered and monitored technology devices provided for all students to use at school and home to minimize sharing. Any student who does not have a district-owned device will receive one at school.
If your student has not yet received a device, please contact your building's main office.
As a reminder, we will not be swapping any Spring-issued Chromebooks unless there is a technical issue. The devices distributed in the Spring were newly purchased with bond dollars and offer the same up-to-date features as the shipment we are expecting.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can my child use their own device?
Yes they can but here are a couple of things to consider:
- The district cannot filter or monitor the device.
- Teachers will not be able to manage the full classroom utilizing the tools for limiting chat or locking to a particular website.
- Once the District moves back to face-to-face learning, your student will be assigned a device to bring to school. We will no longer have shared carts at each building.
What is the plan for handing out devices?
Our staff is busy inventorying and checking our current fleet of ChromeBooks and iPads.
We are inputting the devices into our Destiny Library Management System so we can assign the devices to the students as we would a library book. We are currently waiting on a shipment of ChromeBooks and iPads. We have been working diligently with our vendor for a delivery date on these devices. Once we know when the devices will arrive, we will put together a plan to get the devices into the student’s hands. This will likely look like the device pickup procedure we did in the spring.
My family received a device in the spring, should we hang on to them?
Yes. We have tracked these devices in an inventory and will upload them to the Destiny Resource Manager System and check them out to your family. We will need to make a plan for any Y5-1st grader who currently has a ChromeBook to swap it out for an iPad.
More information to come on that plan.
Any tips for home internet?
Check your home internet plan. If you have more than three devices accessing a high demand application at the same time, such as multiparty video conferencing, you will likely need a plan with a speed higher than 25 Mbps download speed. For reference, below are Comcast’s speed tiers:
- Ensure other household members are not streaming games or movies during learning times.
- Disconnect cell phones from your home wireless network during learning times.
- Please see the FCC Household Broadband Guide for more information: https://www.fcc.gov/consumers/guides/household-broadband-guide
I don’t have internet access, what should I do?
If you do not have internet access at home, please reach out to your building principal to be put on a list.
To see if you qualify for free or reduced cost internet access from Comcast, follow this link: https://www.internetessentials.com/covid19#gethelp&all_Pricingandotherinfo
Charter is also offering free or reduced cost internet access: https://corporate.charter.com/newsroom/charter-to-offer-free-access-to-spectrum-broadband-and-wifi-for-60-days-for-new-K12-and-college-student-households-and-more
Our district's distance learning and Clarkston Virtual platforms rely on high-speed internet connections at home in order for students to access class meetings and curriculum materials. If you are experiencing slow or dropped Internet coverage, here are some tips for improving your connection.
Poor Internet Connectivity?
- Make sure Wi-Fi is turned on.
- Make sure airplane mode is off on tablets or phones.
- Make sure you are logged out of any personal Google accounts. (Here's how to sign out and switch between users on a Chromebook)
- Run a speed test: www.speedtest.com or www.fast.com
- Reboot your device: Try restarting your device by powering it down for 60 seconds and then restarting it.
- Reboot your router and modem: Try restarting/power cycling your WiFi router by unplugging the power for 60 seconds and then plugging it back in.
- Make sure not too many tabs are open. (Here's how to close all tabs.)
- Clear your browsing history and cache.
- Make sure Chrome is up to date.
- Click the bottom right corner of the Chrome OS desktop.
- Select the Settings icon.
- Click "About Chrome."
- Click Check for updates.
- To apply the update, click the arrow icon and select Restart to Update.
- Turn off Wi-Fi on cell phones and other devices not in use.
- Make sure no one is streaming movies (Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, etc.)
- Make sure no one is gaming (Xbox, Playstation, etc.)
- Make sure no one is streaming music (Pandora, etc.)
- How Old is Your Wireless Router? It might be time to replace your router.
- Where is your Wi-Fi router in relation to the student? If the router is in the basement or upstairs and student is on a middle level, you may need a WiFi range extender from your Internet Service Provider.
- Elevate the router to the highest point possible, do not place on the ground or inside of a cabinet, instead set it on top of a desk or table
- Do not place objects, especially metal objects, on top of or around the router that may block or obstruct the wireless signal
- Avoid using your wireless devices near common sources of interference, such as power cables, microwave ovens, fluorescent lights, wireless video cameras, and cordless phones.
- Keep other small electronic devices like phones and handheld gaming devices at least 3 feet away from the computer, Chromebook, or tablet you are trying to use to reduce the number of active devices that use the same wireless frequency band. Both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi devices use the 2.4 GHz band, but many Wi-Fi devices can use the 5 GHz band instead. If your Wi-Fi router supports both bands, it might help to connect more of your Wi-Fi devices to the 5GHz band. Some dual-band routers manage this for you automatically.
- Still stumped? Please call your Internet Service Provider for further troubleshooting or to improve Internet connectivity in your home.
Other Technology Issues?
Visit the Family Tech Support website or email your building Media Tech.