Thursday, March 3, 2016

Technology Update: Bandwidth Conservation (3/3/16)

Conserving Our Bandwidth
As we near our testing window for CAASPP, please be considerate of our network bandwidth by refraining from streaming music for purposes other than instructional (Pandora, Spotify, etc.). This negatively impacts our network. To help preserve the network bandwidth for testing and instructional purposes, I have asked the Systems Engineers to block music streaming for all students. Also, consider your use of video streaming (YouTube, Vimeo, etc.) as well. Rather than have each student access audio or video individually, consider sharing this resource in a direct instruction model with follow up being independent practice. By having all students not streaming audio or video at the same time, we should be able to conserve bandwidth to support our CAASPP testing.

Upgrades to Bandwidth
On January 21, the WUSD Board of Education approved a contract with WAVE to upgrade our Internet connectivity between the district office and Yolo County Office of Education. As mentioned in the Technology Update from December 3, we will be moving from 100 MB to 1 GB connectivity once this is installed - essentially going from 100 to 1,000 in terms of how large the “pipeline” is and will become. We should see less strain on our network prior to actual testing starting, especially when combined with strong stewardship of our bandwidth from the classrooms.

E-Rate Update
As part of the federal E-rate program, the district is applying for circuit and equipment upgrades. This will allow us to better support additional devices as we increase access for our students. Please take note of your role as a classroom teacher in supporting the E-rate application by teaching Internet Safety to your students. This is a requirement of E-rate and requires verification from each teacher that lessons on how to stay safe online is being taught in all of our classrooms. We are using Common Sense Media curriculum for standards-aligned, researched-bases lesson plans that meet these requirements. Many of these lessons are low-tech using only pen and paper and can be completed in approximately an hour.

At a minimum, we are asking that you include the lesson(s) below for your grade level as part of your curriculum. The days before Spring Break might be a good time to incorporate the lesson(s) into your instruction (see links to lessons by grade level - create a free account at Common Sense Media to access these lessons).
After completing the lesson, please complete the verification form and send it to Kim Harrison or Melissa Oliver at the district office. The verification form will be used to validate our compliance for E-Rate. You are welcome to cover more than just the lessons outlined above – check out the Scope and Sequence of Common Sense Media’s lessons.

If you have questions, we are here to assist!

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