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Why Choose Pivot Inspect for the 2019-2020 School Year

Posted by Adam Jones on April 11, 2019

With so many formative assessment options available, how do you know which one is best for students, teachers, and administrators? After all, the needs for each of these stakeholders vary considerably. As you and your team make an important decision about which program you will select using funds from Indiana’s formative assessment grant, I hope that you’ll carefully consider our solution, Pivot Inspect.

Computer-Adaptive vs. Fixed-Form Assessments

Many formative (interim) assessment programs, including those provided by NWEA and STAR, are computer-adaptive. While this approach has clear benefits for a set of specific purposes, teachers have no control over the items students will see. In other words, teachers can’t answer a fundamental question using a computer-adaptive tool: Have students learned the specific skills I’ve taught?

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Topics: Pivot INSPECT, formative assessment

STEM: It's All About the HOW

Posted by Sherry Gick on March 28, 2019

As an educator, there are many different trends and words that seem to make the rounds through our world of education.  The same seems to be true of “STEM” which has definitely been quite the buzz for the last 5 years or so, but is it just a trend?  

I’m here to say, it most definitely is NOT!

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Topics: critical thinking, engagement, teaching strategies, education, teaching, explore, pedagogy, teacher

Wireless that Works in the Classroom

Posted by Josh Gates on March 14, 2019

 

It’s 2008 and you just deployed wireless access points in all the hallways and common areas of your schools. You apply a simple password and give it out to all the staff. Voila! You have a wireless-accessible network.

At this point, most IT staff were content with the setup. It was a simple solution to a simple problem. Device density was not an issue since most schools only had a handful of laptops or wireless devices. Every kid and staff member did not need to stream Netflix or Youtube throughout the day. It was easy. It was simple. It was the past.

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Topics: 1:1, Managed Services, network infrastructure, wireless, IT, computer technicians, engineering

Putting Time In Where It Counts: Active Directory and PowerShell

Posted by Alan Israel on February 28, 2019

The Problem: Time Management

Time management is a problem many IT departments face; often there is just not enough time to complete all the requests in the time they need to be completed by. This is especially true between the times of student registration and the first student day of school. The IT staff is burdened with making hundreds, if not thousands, of Active Directory user changes and new accounts. Active Directory serves as the central source of user accounts for a long list of applications including G Suite for Education, Microsoft Office 365, PIVOT, Canvas, Student Information Systems, Content Filters, and many more.

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Topics: 1:1, Managed Services, productivity, IT, computer technicians, leadership, administrators, engineering

Migrating to Windows 10

Posted by Nathan Park on February 12, 2019

 

The Windows OS Lifecycle

Windows 10 is the next major version in the Microsoft Windows operating system family, seeing its initial release in July of 2015.  As part of Microsoft’s OS lifecycle, Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 will stop receiving updates and support in January of 2020 and 2023, respectively. In addition, 7th Generation CPUs from AMD and Intel are already requiring Windows 10 for driver compatibility, so anything released after early 2017 excludes compatibility with the earlier OSes. Since Windows 10 has matured considerably since the initial release, and with the end of life of Windows 7 less than a year away, it’s definitely time to begin migrating!

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Topics: Managed Services, Software, software release, software update, support, technology, IT, computer technicians, school improvement

Google CS First: First Impressions from a Tech Integration Specialist

Posted by Molly Rupert on January 31, 2019

In this guest post, TIS Brooke Hall (@BrookeHallTIS) describes her first encounters with CS First by Google. Brooke attended a workshop to learn more about the curriculum and to discover ways to use the lessons with students.

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Topics: Google, education, teacher, computer science

Becoming a Google Certified Educator

Posted by Molly Rupert on January 18, 2019

Guest contributor Amber Anania (@msanania) is a 7th grade language arts teacher at Westfield Middle School who recently became a Google Certified Educator Level 1. In this post, she shares her experiences preparing for and taking the qualification exam.

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Topics: Google, lifelong learning, education, teacher

A Solution for Tracking Indiana's Graduation Pathways

Posted by Adam Jones on January 4, 2019

Indiana’s graduation pathways empower students to focus their efforts in high school on a range of careers while acknowledging that there are multiple ways to demonstrate postsecondary readiness. Overall, this initiative promises to bring significant benefits to students, families, schools, and communities. However, counselors and administrators may be left wondering how they will track every student’s pathway considering there are so many options. That’s why the Pivot team has developed an intuitive solution with several time-saving benefits.

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Topics: Pivot, graduation, graduation pathways

The Promise of Indiana's Graduation Pathways

Posted by Adam Jones on December 20, 2018

Over the last several months, Indiana legislators and policymakers wisely amended the requirements for high school graduation to better reflect the varied and valid pathways that students pursue as adults. Rather than mandating that all students pass the same high-stakes standardized assessments to earn a diploma, students are now free to demonstrate their postsecondary readiness in ways that better reflect their interests and goals.

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Topics: Pivot, graduation

Personalized PD at its Finest: The True Story of PyxisEdu and Mishawaka Schools

Posted by Caity Stockstell on December 7, 2018

PyxisEdu is our “go-to” professional learning platform at Mishawaka Schools. PyxisEdu is a professional learning platform that has 201 content categories with593 videos, 513 other learning resources, and 60 collections/units. Content is created by a group of edtech pros that are25+ licensed educators with 60+ edtech certifications and 200+ school years. Teachers in Mishawaka Schools use it to harness the power of technology to move from theory to practice and fuel any time learning. PyxisEdu has professional learning resources for everyone such as blended learning, using G-Suite, telling stories digitally with Book Creator, or using Skype to invite guest speakers into your classroom. Most importantly, however, is the fact that at the core of this platform is learning. PyxisEdu is grounded in a strong learning theory that goes beyond just integrating education technology. Our teachers immerse themselves in resources like learning style theories, universal design for learning, and leadership strategies while getting credit for their learning with the PyxisEdu Professional Growth Point (PGP) tracker.

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Topics: professional development, pyxis, personalized learning