Getting Help with Technology Brenda Kolbe
Getting Help with Technology
For the most part, we expect computers and related systems to function and to do so consistently. However, anyone who has owned a computer knows that from time to time, help might be needed. The district expects this, and plans for it so that resources and manpower are available when they’re required.
Hardware or Software Help
If you’re a staff member and your computer or software ceases to function, well, you probably aren’t reading this. But if it starts misbehaving at some point in the future, there’s a sequence of steps that we’d like you to go through so that we can get the right help to you. If you are an “instructional” network user (student computers, teacher computers), you should contact your technology coordinator. Their role is to make a quick assessment of the problem and submit a work order for repair. Please understand that it is not their job to fix the problem, but rather simply to report it.
Work orders are reviewed and prioritized daily, and technicians are dispatched to make repairs, usually within one or three days of the work order submission, depending on the magnitude of the request. Keep in mind that at certain times of the year (the first few weeks of school, for example), response time might be slower because the call volume is higher than normal.
If you are an “admin” user (office personnel), please call data processing (262-5676). The folks in that office will discuss the problem with you and dispatch help as required. Remember that your technology coordinator has no responsibility for admin support.
If you encounter some computer-related thing that you don’t know how to do, there are some things that you can do to get help. If it is not ECS-specific (for example, you’re wondering how to use the VLOOKUP function in Microsoft Excel), you should first try finding those answers on the Internet via your favorite search engine. The Internet is the most complete user manual ever developed; you simply have to dig for a moment. Channeling non-ECS specific questions first away from your technology coordinator lowers that person’s workload and allows them more elbow-room to answer the questions that the Internet can’t help with (“how does this new gradebook work”).
When you’ve given up on the Internet and stumped your technology coordinator, your coordinator will typically forward your question on to the technical staff via the work order system or contact the district’s technology director on your behalf. We request that you do not attempt to contact members of the technical staff directly, as our ability to organize and prioritize work is lessened when we try to be responsive to requests that come in via other methods than the work order system. (fewer points of contact = better organization = more consistent service)
Training and Staff Development
To the extent that we are able, the district endeavors to maintain a “if you can find a group of staff members willing to get together to receive technology training, we’ll find a way to make it happen” philosophy. We are most interested in providing any support we can to help teachers use best-practice instructional methods which include the use of technology to enhance instruction. Research indicates that technology can be a powerful tool to engage students and raise achievement. As ideas for training arise, your building principal and technology coordinator can contact the district’s technology director for help in facilitating that training.