Located on the East Coast of New Jersey, Egg Harbor Township School District strives itself on sustainability efforts to save energy and create better environments across all of its schools, helping to nurture and support learning achievement. With active promotion of digital technology use in the classroom, Egg Harbor Township required a reliable network and computer lab management solution to help manage and monitor devices and students.
With nothing in place on the district network to monitor student activity on Windows machines, Egg Harbor Township started to look for a cost-effective solution that would provide comprehensive monitoring and management tools. Prior to Education Pro, controlling student behavior on the PCs proved difficult, with the IT team required to help monitor and manage tech-based lessons day-to-day. The IT team were predominately looking for a solution for real-time monitoring and lab management to help give teachers more control in the classroom, save time for the IT team and enhance the digital learning environment.
After comparing various software providers, Egg Harbor Township identified Education Pro, a consolidated solution that would provide the lab management tools necessary to monitor Windows devices, as well as several Chromebooks and iPads that the district had also implemented. In addition to enabling the IT team to effectively monitor the district’s network, Education Pro also complemented Egg Harbor Township’s energy consumption strategy via the ability to remotely schedule power on and shutdown of machines, at a competitive price – a large advantage over other software providers.
At the time of implementation Egg Harbor Township had a Novell network across the district and therefore worked with a number of original network applications through Zenworks. As one of Impero’s first deployments along the East Coast of the U.S., alongside Greater Egg Harbor Regional School District, Egg Harbor Township worked closely with the development team at Impero to get Education Pro up and running with ease. Since then, Egg Harbor Township has moved across to Microsoft, simplifying the implementation process across Alder Avenue Middle School, Fernwood Avenue Middle School and Egg Harbor High School.
Since implementing Impero Education Pro, the Egg Harbor Township School District has realized several core benefits, including:
Focuses learning – With classroom management tools to turn off audio access, teachers can keep students from streaming media when they should be focused on writing assignments.
Saves time – With remote control access to schedule machines to shut down when not in use, the IT team (or teacher present in the IT suite) no longer has to put aside time to log on and off these machines during each lesson.
Creates good digital citizens – Real-time monitoring of all students’ online activity identifies any inappropriate content shared during lessons, empowering teaching staff to respond immediately by offering counter-narratives to intervene before an incident escalates.
Q&A with Mike Sweeder, Director of Educational Media Technology
How does Education Pro contribute to your energy saving costs?
Here at Egg Harbor Township we’re big on energy saving. 8 of our 10 school district buildings are now Energy Star Facilities by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the three schools using Education Pro are Sustainable Jersey Certified. At the district we have a dedicated employee who monitors our electricity and gas consumption month-on-month, showing that we’ve actually saved millions of dollars! Education Pro really fits in with our overall energy strategy, by scheduling all machines to power on and off at the start and end of the school day, electricity wastage drastically reduced by ensuring that no machines are left powered on overnight or over the school holidays – saving tax payers’ money.
How has Education Pro helped teachers take back control in the classroom?
Teachers are using it every day in our IT labs to monitor student activity across the 20-30 computers. Education Pro decentralizes the admin function and empowers the classroom teacher to take advantage of the classroom management tools, including live real-time monitoring and the ability to lock an individual or group of students’ screens, or restrict internet access, to focus the class when necessary. Teachers are now able to take ownership of student behavior, without consulting IT, and take necessary disciplinary action immediately in the IT labs – which saves us masses of time.
What are your next steps?
We’ve recently purchased 600 Chromebooks across the district which are being adopted quickly. We need to grow our platform for mobility and an MDM solution is our next step. We are yet to deploy Education Pro across our Chromebooks in a lab setting, but we’re eager to look at the recent Chrome OS enhancements developed within Education Pro and discover how they can help us manage all our devices on the network.
How would you sum up Impero?