Duncanville ISD Schools Participate in Hour of Code During Computer Science Week
This past week, many students in Duncanville ISD celebrated Computer Science Week by participating in a nation-wide event called the Hour of Code. While some high school students showed off their skills using Alice 3 and Greenfoot software, some lower grades had a blast coding using free software from Code.org. Students worked independently or in groups to learn, understand and solve basic to extensive tasks through programming. Coding not only teaches our students extensive problem-solving skills, but it also strengthens skills in logical thinking, self-management, team building, and mental flexibility. It also enhances skills in all subject areas, especially those focusing on Math and Science.
The great news is that coding is not limited to Computer Science week! It can be done at any time. Code.org offers free online courses that can be completed at school or home. Find out more at studio.code.org.
Bilhartz, Hyman and Smith Teachers Receive New Toshiba Laptops
Over the past several weeks over 300 new Toshiba laptops have been deployed to campuses. These recipients include principals, pilot participants, early-bird participants, Bilhartz, Hyman and Smith elementary staff. This week, we have plans to deploy to Fairmeadows, Central and Acton elementary staff members. After the first of the year, the remaining elementary campuses will receive their devices, followed by intermediate, middle school and then high school.
Overall, deployments are going very smoothly. A special thanks goes out to all campuses who have come ready for their deployment. Many staff members have shown up with all of their data backed-up prior to the deployment, ALL of their equipment ready to turn in and disk drives free from CDs/DVDs. For more information on what you can do to prepare for your campus laptop deployment, visit our website.
Clearing Saved Passwords=Protected Computer
Many people ask the
question, “Is it a good idea to choose to save my password when my browser asks”? While it may be convenient to save your password, in some cases this may pose security risks. Not only can users who have access to your computer log into various accounts that you have setup, they can also gain access to secure student data that you have stored within your computer. In addition, although our filters work double-time to prevent viruses and malware, some sneaky viruses can actually steal saved passwords.
You may also want to consider that the technology help desk has received cases that an issue with eSchool prevented them from accessing their account. In other words, they were “locked out” of the system. After taking a deeper look into the issue, it was discovered that this occurred when eSchool continued to search for a staff member’s password after they had changed their password. The browser automatically saving their password caused the system to continually auto-log them in with the incorrect password. This eventually relayed to the system to lock their account.
When deciding whether or not is a good idea save your passwords in your browser, remember that all employees must comply with FERPA (Family Education Rights and Privacy Act) and the Public Information Act as outlined in our district handbook and board policy. DISD’s Employee Acceptable Use Agreement (AUA) states that “As part of your duties. . . Caution must be taken to insure that student data is not exposed to those without an educational need to know.”
Detailed instructions for how to clear your browser’s saved passwords can be found on our district technology website.
Learn the Best Setup for Your Technology Equipment
With all of the wonderful new technology being placed into the hands of students and teachers, it may be helpful to learn best practices for setting up cabling for your laptop, document camera and projector. While our technicians and Instructional Technology Coordinators assist with this process during initial set up and training, it may be useful to have access to a tangible reminder to refer back to. This information can be found in the Idea Guide portion of the website, as well as many other useful resources.
Have a Safe Holiday!
We hope you all have a wonderful holiday break. Safe travels and enjoy a restful time with family and friends.