Elementary Chromebooks & Clever FAQ

posted Sep 13, 2019, 6:46 AM by Granger Meador   [ updated Sep 17, 2019, 9:14 AM ]
Before the all-district rally on August 12, Granger Meador presented on Chromebooks and Clever to all district elementary teachers. He used PearDeck to collect questions from audience members. Below are the responses to the common questions, which are also shown in a Google Doc:

Staff help is at BPSCHROMEBOOK.ORG

  • Are there headphones that come with the Chromebook carts?

    • In the spring of 2019, the district provided 3 classroom sets of 24 Avid AE-36 headphones with microphones to each elementary and middle school and 7 sets across BHS.

    • Unless a compelling case is made via the District Technology Committee for the need for additional headphones from the district, additional purchases would be from a principal’s discretionary category 015 funds.

  • Does Lightspeed Relay work on iPads?

    • Lightspeed says it can, but we haven't explored that yet. As of 9/14/2019, Tech Services was able to get most elementary and teacher accounts to sync with Lightspeed Relay Classroom for Chromebook monitoring and control. Eventually the Instructional Technology Assistants at the sites will be ready to offer training on Lightspeed Relay Classroom.

  • I would like to add X for my students.

    • You can direct students to any free educational website. Some ways to share links:

      • Write a link on the board for them to type in.

      • Configure and use Lightspeed Classroom to send a link to all of your students when they are logged into a Chromebook.

      • Set up Google Classroom and use it to share links with your students.

      • Set up and publish your teacher page in Clever and add links to it. See How do I add a link to Clever? in the next section of this FAQ.

    • Adding a Chrome extension for student use is non-trivial, requiring 18 separate changes in the Google Admin Console. So requests for those run through Granger Meador, who vets them based on the level of need, privacy concerns, if an already-approved extension would instead suffice, etc. 

    • The district is now spending about a quarter-million dollars annually on curricular services such as Renaissance Learning (Star, Math Facts in a Flash), Edmentum (Study Island, Exact Path, Reading Eggs, Math Seeds), Type-to-Learn, Bookflix, and Reading Counts. So additional paid services are probably reliant on securing 015 funds from your site principal or funding from other sources. 

  • Do we have a mouse for each device?

    • No; mice for mobile devices are prone to breakage and loss; students are expected to use the trackpads. A site can elect to purchase mice out of its discretionary 015 funds, but be sure you get inexpensive WIRED mice you don’t mind seeing broken/lost.

  • Will there be chargers in the classroom?

    • No, the chargers are in the carts. It is thus vital that students plug the devices back into their charging cables when finished each day. A new Chromebook will run 10 hours on a full charge; that run-time will slowly degrade over the years.

  • Will our elementary buildings be equipped to handle 1:1 with current WiFi?

    • They are already wired with sufficient WiFi access points to support 1:1 computing. But until mid-September 2019 there were network issues, particularly in the mornings, which were finally resolved on 9/14/2019. Those were not related to the number of WiFi access points, but instead to a logical bottleneck in how the district's network interacted with the internet.


Staff help is at BPSCLEVER.ORG

  • Can students use Clever to log in from home/elsewhere?

    • A student can use Clever to access linked services from anywhere in the world. The only way to prevent access is if an application has its own time-based lockouts to make it inaccessible or similar settings. Clever itself does not offer time-based lockouts.

  • How do I add a link to Clever?

    • Teachers can add links to their own teacher pages in Clever. Eventually the site Instructional Technology Assistants will offer trainings on this, but see below for the types of links and how to add them.

    • Links in Clever are one of three types:

      • Simple web links, such as the one in each portal to the Student Resource page on the site’s website. They just take a student to a webpage, nothing more.

        1. Click on your Teacher Page in the Clever Portal.

        2. Click the green +Add button at the bottom right.

        3. Click the green Link button at the bottom right.

        4. Open a new tab in your browser and go to the webpage you want to link to. Highlight the web address (URL) in the address bar and press CTRL-C to copy that to your clipboard.

        5. Back in the Clever tab, click in the Paste Link Here box and press CTRL+V to paste the URL.

        6. Fill in the Link Name, select a Category if you have set any of those up, and either select or upload a graphical icon.

        7. Click the Add link button.

      • Single-Sign-On (SSO) Apps where Clever will try to memorize the username and password a student uses to make it easy for them to login in the future; in some cases it may be able to roster and setup accounts for your students. These features may or may not work! If an App just doesn’t work, discard that link and just build a simple web link to the site instead and have students enter their credentials manually.

        1. Click on your Teacher Page in the Clever Portal.

        2. Click the green +Add button at the bottom right.

        3. Click the green App button at the bottom right.

        4. Type in the name of the service to search for it. 

          • If you don’t find a matching entry with any variations on the name of the service, you’ll probably need to just build a simple web link as described above.

          • If you do get a match, such as Spelling Classroom, you may see Install X. Press that button to set up the account.

          • You are potentially liable if you link to a service that is not FERPA compliant in protecting student privacy. You should go to the website for the service in question and look for their Privacy Policy, which may be linked on a Support page, a FAQ, or at the footer of the website. In our example, Spelling Classroom has a posted privacy policy that is compliant, including not using or disclosing student data for third-party advertising, behaviorally-targeted advertising, and not selling or renting their data out to others, including marketers or advertisers. It also details how to edit or delete student or teacher data.

      • District-rostered SSO Apps require that the district set up rostering via Clever with a particular service used by many teachers. This is currently limited to district-paid services since the set-up process can take weeks of back-and-forth work with a vendor to implement successfully. This usually needs to be done over summer break to avoid disrupting existing service access. Also, not all vendors support rostering via Clever. See the Clever Integration Sheet for our current status.

    • Instructional Technology Assistants (ITAs)and Instructional Coaches can also add links to the portal for their entire school. ITAs are being trained in that process in September 2019.

  • Why can’t I see particular application in Clever?

    • Clever only shows icons set up to work for a particular site, grade level, etc. based on our paid licensing for a particular service and how a student or teacher is classified in PowerSchool. So it won’t display Reading Eggs or Math Seeds to 3rd, 4th, or 5th-grade students or teachers, while it won’t show Study Island to PreK, K, 1st, or 2nd-grade students or teachers, it won't show ST Math to PreK student or teachers, etc.

    • When needed, we can customize the Clever sync for a site to provide access to particular staff members who don’t have matching classes or accounts in PowerSchool. This usually applies to instructional coaches, Title I and special education teachers, counselors, and the like. Contact Kelli Bryant at the ESC if you need access that is not currently provided and be as specific as possible about what you need access to and why. She will rope in Granger Meador as needed.