Ranked the 3rd best school district in the state, Gilchrist County School District consists of two elementary schools and two combination middle and high schools. With dedicated teachers and parents, Gilchrist County have been awarded “A” grade school district status for the past few years, and technology has helped contribute to this.
Since implementing a 1:1 scheme throughout the district, all Gilchrist County students now have access to a range of Windows desktops and laptops to enhance student learning. Aside from using Faronics Insight for classroom management in some of the Windows labs, Gilchrist County had nothing in place to centralize monitoring of student activity online.
Despite not actively looking for a solution at the time, Gilchrist County were working with STS Education (their dedicated distributor who helped supply the district’s laptops) to successfully implement a 1:1 scheme. As part of this, the team recommended Impero Education Pro to help teachers manage students and create focused classrooms. After an online demonstration, Gilchrist County understood the full functionality included in Impero Education Pro and decided it was a worthy investment.
As Gilchrist County implemented Impero Education Pro throughout the district, the software was pushed out and deployed easily to hundreds of machines with no input required by the IT team.
Since implementing Impero Education Pro, Gilchrist County School District has realized several core benefits, including:
Maximize computer usage – Using the power management features included in Impero Education Pro, Gilchrist County can power on and off all machines in several labs. In order to ensure students can get on task quickly, computers are kept online all day; if a student turns a machine off it automatically powers back on 15 seconds later.
Saves time – Using remote control access, Gilchrist County can effortlessly finish deployment and have everything up and running faster. Before, the IT team would have to walk around hundreds of machines, however Gilchrist County can control 30-100 computers remotely at a time.
Real-time monitoring – With live thumbnail views of all desktops and laptops from one screen, teachers can easily pinpoint students off task and bring focus back to the classroom.
Q&A with Aaron Wiley, Director of Technology & Jimmy Ballentine, Network Manager
How has Impero Education Pro helped teachers take back control in the classroom?
The year between setting up our 1:1 scheme and using Impero Education Pro really helped to put emphasis on how much we needed it, especially for classroom control. The teachers love the one-click tools, locking students’ screens, blocking USBs, pushing websites and even broadcasting screens. For our structured certification program, the teachers love demonstrating how things are done and using the projectors and electronic boards to show how, and how not, to complete a task. Setting up groups for teachers is also much easier; teachers can see all the students for their period allowing class to begin instantly. The teachers are so reliant on Impero Education Pro – we soon know if it’s not working for them!
How has Impero Education Pro helped create focused classrooms?
The monitoring features included in Impero Education Pro help teachers complete their goals and objectives for the lesson and we can proactively use technology to get everything done. Using the live thumbnail views and captures, we can make sure students are staying on task and see if any of them are going elsewhere. The keyword control functionality helps to detect certain phrases being typed and if students are accessing inappropriate content, they will receive a notification. If they persistently do this, it will simply shut down the browser – but most of time they get the message once or twice and don’t do it again. The activity log helps to show what our students have been accessing and where they’ve been accessing it; this is crucial for our block lists, as we can add links to gaming and movie sites, which are often missed by our filter. We add these to the Impero console to make sure they don’t fall through the cracks and prevent opening up our students to a number of distractions.
How would you describe the support team?
The support team are excellent! You get a call back within a matter of minutes. Impero are definitely the quickest of all our service providers. We’ve rarely had any issues, so we’ve not had to contact them much, but when we have it’s been quick and painless to get it all back up and going again.
How would you sum up Impero?
It’s a window into what students are doing on their devices.