There were several server and server infrastructure upgrades completed over the summer. The six year old virtual server hosts and storage area network (SAN) hardware was updated. This will improve server performance and relieve some of the disk space restrictions we have been experiencing.
We also upgrade several file and application servers to the latest version for Windows server software. These include:
- Print Server
- Food Service Server (Meal Magic)
- Staff File Server
- Student File Server
While these updates will be beneficial over the long run, there are likely some immediate difficulties that will be experienced.
Computer Labs – High School only
The computer labs in the high school library, and rooms 114, 115, and 224 were replaced over the summer. Additionally, most student computers, both Mac and Windows, were re-imaged.
In an effort to improve wireless connectivity we have created additional wireless network segments. This results in additional wireless networks or SSID’s being available. Each SSID has a specific purpose as outlined below:
- HCCS-GUEST – Provides guest access for 6 hours, receives default filtering
- HCCS-SECURE – Standard connection for school owned wireless Windows computers, receives filtering based on user logon
- HCCS-STAFF – Used for staff owned devices, use your computer username and password to logon, receives staff filtering
- HCCS-STUDENT – Used for student owned devices, student uses their normal username and password to logon, receives student level filtering based upon building
- HCCS-WLAN – Standard connection for district owned non-Windows devices (iPads, Chromebooks, Mac laptops), receives student level filtering based on building. Mac laptops will be filtered by logged on user if the filtering agent is working.
It should be noted that all of the filtering is not setup yet.
We are required by both state and federal laws to protect our students from the dangers of the Internet. We try to filter student appropriately by age level. The default filtering level is the most restrictive and is used when no other filtering level is matched to the user, device, or network segment.
The Staff filter is very limited, it set to only block pornography and security risks. If your filtering is beyond those two categories then the filter is probably not identifying you correctly. If you are blocked the Lightspeed page displays some information in the upper left corner. Providing that information in your help desk ticket may help us to resolve the problem.
A/V Towers – Elementary and Middle School only
A serious problem with the Java app and hardware controller has occurred with the elementary and middle school A/V Towers. The Java app used to control the tower and devices is no longer compatible with the newer versions of Java. Also, in numerous cases the button panel on the A/V Tower is in poor shape and may no longer work.
These control features provided a simple one button control of these devices but also created a significant source of failures and problems. Under current budget restrictions, updating the control systems are cost prohibitive.
For these reasons we have disabled the AMX controller in all of the classroom A/V Towers. Each classroom has been provided a remote control for your projector and instructions on selecting various input sources.
We have also thoroughly cleaned the inside of each A/V Tower in an effort to eliminate the overheating problems we were experiencing.
We have converted our website hosting from eChalk to Sharp School over the summer. The primary focus of the conversion to date has been the district and building websites. Sharp School offers a wide range of instructional tools but it will take some time to get them all online. There are three levels of teacher/classroom communication tools which are:
- Staff Profiles
- Teacher Webpages
- Online Classrooms
Due to a number of factors, we are only asking staff to update their profile information at this time. The following instructions will help you logon to your building site and update your profile information.
- Navigate to your building website
- You can use www.harpercreek.net and use the Select a School dropdown or
- You can use ble, son, wpe, ms, or hs in place of the www to directly access your building site
- When you are on your building site click on the Login link towards the top of your screen
- Use the same username and password you use to logon to your computer to logon to your building website
- After you have logged on your name should appear to the left of the Logout link towards the top of your screen
- Click on your name to access your profile
- Use the Edit User tab to update your profile information
- You do not need to fill out your home address or telephone information
- It is recommended you only use instructional, not personal, Social Media sites in your profile
- If you have an external classroom website, you can enter the URL in the Website field
As additional instructional tools come online you are welcome to experiment with them or incorporate them into your classes.
Status of Technical Support
Over the summer we had 49 staff members change rooms, change buildings, hired, retired, name change, or exited the district. Depending upon the type of change we are adding or removing accounts, moving computers and phones, changing phone extensions, resetting voicemail, setting up copy codes, etc.
We closed 298 help desk tickets over the summer, 314 new tickets were opened, and there are currently 70 open tickets in the queue. Our technicians are working overtime almost every day in an effort to keep up.
You can help by using the help desk system to request help. Please avoid using emails and phone calls to as they almost always slow us down.