Spotlighting NR21 Success Stories

Featured Educator: LaRenda Norman @ Greenspun JHS

image of digital coach Larenda Norman

Digital Coach

LaRenda was bitten with the Google bug almost 6 years ago when she attended her first Google conference. She states, "It was exciting being surrounded by like-minded tech people that could see how the G Suite platform would change teaching practices." This small group of Google pioneers would become some of the first Google Certified Trainers in the Clark County School District. Norman states, "I have seen the biggest shift in educational practice since I began teaching over 20 years ago. Though there are many challenges that come with students and tech, they are minimal in comparison to growth and opportunities that technology provides to ALL students."

This experience would be the front-runner to another big transformational experience LaRenda has been part of; the implementation of the NR21 1:1 Chromebook Grant at Greenspun Junior High School. LaRenda shared, "I have witnessed an explosion in collaboration and creativity in the three years we have had Chromebooks." With new growth and change on campus, LaRenda kept innovating to meet the needs of her school head on. She developed the Greenspun Guru Help Desk to address Chromebook fixes that could be addressed on site. Here, students and staff come to receive help with their devices. Each hour, two student representatives that have been trained to listen and troubleshoot, are available to assist students and teachers. In addition, the Greenspun Gurus help with basic login issues, power washing, installing BIOS and OS systems back onto Chromebooks, enrolling Chromebooks, and fixing keyboards. Since September 12, 2017, the Guru’s have helped resolve more than 1600 issues.

image of Greenspun Junior High School logo shield with image of a scroll and dolphins inside surrounded by filigree

Words of Wisdom

The best advice I could give someone starting a 1:1 initiative:

  • Take on what you can at your own pace. It is easy to feel overwhelmed and small steps really do turn into leaps.
  • Some take longer than others; display compassion and understanding- it really goes a long way. Be proud of any step forward that is taken. If a teacher does a test on Google Forms for the first time, be as excited as they are.
  • Share, embrace, and celebrate all accomplishments on your campus!
  • I would encourage coaches and/or teachers to work on becoming a Google Certified Educator Level 1 to better understand the basics of what a 1:1 opportunity entails.
image of several badges hanging on individual chains reading Google Guru

Greenspun's Student Guru's troubleshoot Chromebook issues at the help desk and within classrooms.

image of school notice for Chromebook tech support with Google Gurus
image of wall reading Google Guru and a stackable technology charging case

Greenspun's Guru Help Desk has been a guiding model for NR21 school's within CCSD and statewide.