Improving the process, proving the concept
Joel needed a solution that would enable a systematic device transformation for his school district and its students: “My dream is a device in each student’s hand,” says Joel, “regardless of whether that’s a tablet, or a touch device in a kindergartener’s hand because they are more art driven, or a laptop for grades 3 through 12. And not just any device that is assigned to them, but one that they are actually able to take home.”
Joel isn’t looking for just any device; his ideal state is a Windows 10 device in every student’s hands. The Windows 10 operating system is intuitive to use and to manage. During the deployment of Intune for Education, Joel was especially impressed that the “Windows 10 devices were able to detect the newest driver,” an improvement on past deployments. These incremental improvements in the deployment process simplify the management of technology assets across the district.
This is important, because Calvert County schools use a mix of devices. Some schools within Calvert County have already self-funded a one-to-one student device program, while others have laptop carts and deploy about 400 devices per school. Most of these Windows 10 devices are HP Stream and HP x360, which have been a part of their technology toolkit through four successive device generations. As Program Coordinator, Joel is responsible for managing this mix of shared and one-to-one devices. With Intune for Education, he has a way to configure each device according to its user. Doing so allows him to test and plan for that one-to-one future.
“We are doing a transition, a little bit at a time,” Joel noted. “We are doing a proof-of-concept so that we can prove that one-to-one works, and then we can go ask for more money from our county. We need a track record to be able to say we’ve been successful.” Joel knows that track record must address not just how to get the devices to the students, but how the devices can be managed. He knows that to successfully lobby for more funding will require consensus and coordination from other stakeholders in the district. Teachers and specialists must be comfortable creating digital curriculum and classes that empower staff, faculty, and students to use the devices safely and effectively.