While it has undoubtedly proved challenging for businesses to implement and support hybrid and remote work strategies, supporting a remote learning environment for school systems and colleges is even more daunting. Some students may have some type of computing device already, on the other hand, institutions must be able to ensure equity of access so that each student is guaranteed the same digital experience regardless of demographic or income. Everyone agrees that every child must have equal opportunity in digital learning, achieving this may be one of our most significant educational challenges.
The Shortcoming of One-to-One Programs
Some schools have gone the route of one-to-one programs as an answer in which each student is assigned school-issued devices to each student. While this logical but costly approach may be possible for some school systems with ample budgets, it is often out of reach for many districts. For those schools that are considering this alternative, the challenges are many.
- Schools must have the necessary IT teams to support device deployments of such scale.
- Excess inventory must be on hand to substitute broken or lost student devices.
- Future budgets must be allocated to support perpetual and expensive refresh cycles.
- Technology administrators are responsible for what students do with their machines outside classroom learning times, creating possible liability concerns for the district.
- Technology departments must provide web filtering solutions that accommodate remote devices.
- Different levels of technology are appropriate for each grade level, so an elementary student doesn’t need the same amount of access as a high school student.
The challenge isn’t just for K12 systems, however. Colleges and universities must also ensure that all students have the same equitable desktop experience. Even if all college students have a device, how can any level of desktop or application conformity be achieved when students have such a varied array of device form factors and operating systems?
The simplest way to schedule remote classes and events
Students don’t need access to digital learning resources 24/7. They just need them during class time. Occasionally, they may need access to a specialized lab computer or application outside the classroom. With the new easy-to-use resource reservation module of Thinfinity Remote Workspace, faculty and students can book the device or software they need based on date, time, and recurrence. Teachers can book complete virtual classrooms for their lessons, and students can check for specialized computer availability from a built-in calendar view. Devices are only available during prescribed set times. Students are automatically disconnected once the session ends, making the computer available for the next booked session. This has several advantages:
- You don’t need an assigned desktop for every student throughout the school, just one for every station in a virtual classroom session.
- School technology leaders are no longer saddled with enforcing web filtering for students outside of classroom time.
- Because desktops never leave the network perimeter, securing and managing them is greatly simplified.
A Safe and Secure Learning Environment
Online security is a big concern for parents, school administrators, and technology leaders alike. Parents don’t want their children exposed to inappropriate web content. At the same time, desktop admins are responsible for securing student devices from multiple threat types when they leave the confines of the network perimeter. With Thinfinity Remote Workspace, the online student experience is tightly controlled because all resources are hosted in a secure cloud environment or within your on-prem protected environment. You can also create security policies that enforce where users can save data and restrict their ability to copy, paste or print to ensure the integrity of testing and student assignments.
At Cybele Software, we are making it easier for schools to focus on their task of educating students by reducing the burden of financing and supporting technology. Our out-of-the-box solution is the simplest cloud solution available for educational organizations. Those schools with an established on-prem infrastructure can already host Thinfinity on their existing on-prem environment. You can also let us manage and host everything for you, thus providing a fully-fledged digital classroom with practically zero effort. By shouldering the heavy lifting for you, your organization can focus on the art of teaching.
Find out more about how Thinfinity Workspace is helping to empower schools to educate students wherever they may be. Contact us! We are happy to demo the product or answer any questions.