Wednesday, November 4, 2015

DTC Recommends Schoology as Barrington 220 LMS

Since last year, the District Technology Committee (DTC)—comprised primarily of teachers representing buildings, grade levels, and departments across the district—has been discussing the possibility of naming a single Learning Management System (LMS) for use in Barrington 220.

Many considerations have been part of the DTC's LMS conversation, including:
  • Availability of professional development for teachers.
  • Ability to transition from former LMS platforms.
  • Ease of use for teachers and students.
  • Connectivity to Infinite Campus.
  • Availability of specific LMS features (assessments, linking of resources, etc.).
  • Flexibility of digital workflows.
  • Compatibility with different device platforms (OS X, iOS, others).
  • Appropriate user interface for multiple grade levels.
  • Communication features.
  • Simplified user experience for students (and parents) to be able to access and manage fewer systems to find day-to-day class information.
DTC member representatives reported that many teachers were interested in beginning to use a Learning Management System, but that teachers would feel more comfortable devoting the time to starting the process after an official decision was reached. The DTC has been fortunate to be able to bring authentic feedback from many district teachers already using several different Learning Management Systems.

After much deliberation, the DTC recommends Schoology as the Barrington 220 LMS. To support the decision, the DTC also recommends provisions for both timing and ongoing support. Here is the recommendation from the Barrington 220 District Technology Committee:

DTC Recommendation

Beginning in the 2016–17 school year, use Schoology as the official district Learning Management System (LMS). 
  • Provide adequate transition timing.
    • Teachers may use their current LMS throughout the 2015–16 school year. 
    • Teachers should begin making the transition to Schoology in 2015–16. 
    • If necessary, the district will keep a legacy LMS for a period of time during 2016–17 (for the purpose of accessing materials, not for teaching courses).
  • Provide support.
    • The district will provide transition support (moving files and resources).
    • The district will provide differentiated professional development.

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