Part of the English Schools Foundation, ESF Kennedy School is one of 22 schools across Hong Kong providing English-medium international education. Thriving to provide the best of teaching and learning, an integral part of its teaching program is the use of dedicated Chromebooks and even a 1:1 scheme for years 4-6.
Using the universal firewall and internet filter for threat management, ESF Kennedy School were already able to blacklist individual websites but had no way to monitor and control its Chromebooks in the classroom and on the network as a whole. However, with data privacy and harvesting laws in place, finding a solution that conformed to the specifications to stay legal in Hong Kong proved difficult.
ESF Kennedy School started actively hunting for a program and reached out to PTS Consulting, who mentioned Impero Education Pro. After reaching out and finding out more, ESF Kennedy School soon realised Impero was the first product to meet all the specifications needed and would help to monitor and control its Chromebooks in the classroom.
Described as “very straightforward” by the Learning Technology Advisor, Impero Education Pro was pushed out across ESF Kennedy School in little time. After spending some time creating the relevant Google Classroom groups for the academic year, ESF Kennedy School were able to use the Google Classroom integration available in Impero Education Pro to pull groups in to the Impero console, ready for teachers to use.
Since installing Impero Education Pro, ESF Kennedy School has realised a number of core benefits:
Streamlining teaching time: With the click of a button, all screens can be locked to grab the attention of the whole class. Previously it could take up to 3-4 minutes to get all the laptop lids closed down with the attention of all students.
Improve student engagement: Through showcasing exemplary work to all students using the broadcast screen functionality, students are more engaged and working harder to get their work displayed to the class.
Support digital citizenship: Using the keyword detection functionality, ESF Kennedy School can identify students using their devices for inappropriate use. Students can then be taught how to behave safely and appropriate online.
Q&A with Kevin Tibble, Learning Technology Advisor
How has Impero Education Pro enhanced digital learning?
The thing we like the most is the classroom management tools. Being able to grab attention, fluidly display information, share work and even easily spot common mistakes helps to speed up and provide efficiency in teaching. With live thumbnail views teachers can easily see if students are going on games or something silly they shouldn’t be. They know we’re monitoring their screens now which has removed nearly all misbehaviour on the devices. With this, teachers can also easily spot common mistakes, gather the attention of the class and address the issue. Using the broadcast screen functionality our teachers mirror their screen to the students and show them where they may be going wrong, for example if they’re using an unreliable source of information. In addition, teachers can also broadcast a student’s screen to the rest of the class to show exemplary work, the students love it! It really helps to build their self-esteem.
How does Impero Education Pro support digital citizenship?
Alongside being able to detect frequently used games and inappropriate use of devices, such as swearing, we’ve been able to detect more serious cases that a student may need support. Usually overheard on the playground or from older siblings, students can be seen typing sexually explicit terms. We occasionally find that these students don’t have the opportunity to talk about these kinds of things at home. Our school provides digital citizenship education to all students to show them the internet can be a good place. However, there are things you don’t want to search, like the topics mentioned above. Through this education we can explain this so they understand there can be dangers online.
What are your next steps?
Technology is one of those things students get distracted by very quickly. Impero Education Pro has helped to improve the ethos of teachers taking control of computers and getting students quickly back on track. During IT lessons we have a number of students who can’t use a keyboard and mouse properly – being able to log in these students, and the rest of the class, saves an immense amount of teaching time. Alongside this, other classroom control tools, such as remote control and broadcast screen, are useful for students with visual difficulties as the child no longer has to look at the board but rather their own screen to participate.
How would you sum up Impero?
Easy, reliable and insightful.