Device Management Solution – DCPS

Duval County School District Engages Emtec for

Device Management Solution for 1:1 Education Initiative
Advanced laptop management solution utilizing smart lockers and cloud-based portal
increases IT efficiency and will save district 165,680 hours in instructional time.

Challenge

In their drive for 1:1 education (one device per student), Duval County Public Schools (DCPS), the 20th largest school district in the United States, upgraded their wireless capabilities throughout the district within two years, bringing 10G bandwidth to their 196 schools.

With the required wireless bandwidth in place, DCPS implemented a 1:1 roll-out to their Fletcher Middle School in a pilot program. The district realized they had some gaps that needed to be addressed to effectively manage the 68,000 district owned laptops that would be utilized across the district for this initiative. Their three primary concerns included:

  • Capacity to handle the power requirements for all devices
  • Secure storage of devices while not in use while preserving ease of access for students and teachers
  • Ability to quickly and easily manage or upgrade devices when required

“We started with storage carts, which addressed the charging and security needs,” said Jim Culbert, Duval’s executive director of information technology. “But as we moved closer to 1:1 in our schools, we needed more advanced capabilities.”

The district needed an advanced solution for remote management, security and storage to address the IT team’s concerns while simplifying the process for students and teachers, so their time can be spent in the classroom on instruction.

Solution

Emtec, with partner Bretford, designed and implemented an advanced device management solution for Duval County Public Schools. The solution includes cutting edge RFID lockers that replace traditional storage carts located in school halls to provide secure storage and charging for student’s devices while not in use. The solution also includes a cloud-based web portal, Bredford Connect, where the district’s IT administrators can manage all devices virtually including access to real-time locker statistics, remotely unlock bays, monitor device check-in and check-out as well as implement device upgrades.

Results

Duval’s IT team can now manage thousands of devices virtually, including completion of software upgrades and updates as needed. “The remote management and upgrade capabilities have made a major difference for our IT team,” Culbert said. “For example, a software upgrade used to take a significant amount of time because we had to go through each laptop separately. Now we just log on to our portal and with a few clicks all of the laptops in our lockers update. That means our IT team can focus on bigger tasks; the portal handles the little things for us.”

The simplified storage allows students easy access during peak times of the day, and teachers now use the time previously spent managing laptops on additional lesson planning or instruction. As the number of laptops and lockers in the district increases, so do student grades and test scores. “Because students only need to stop at the smart lockers twice each day, we’ve been able to shorten our bell schedules and give students more time in the classroom,” Culbert said. “And that has a positive impact on both learning and funding.”

Duval County Public School

Industry
K-12 Education

Schools
196

Headquarters
Jacksonville, FL

Students
130,000

Business Impacts

  • Improved IT efficiency via remote hardware and software management
  • Fewer repairs and damaged equipment claims
  • Will save district 165,680 hours in device management time, providing more time for instruction
  • Eliminates need for district wide electrical upgrade to support charging
“A software upgrade used to take a significant amount of time because we had to go through each laptop separately. Now we just log on to our portal and with a few clicks all of the laptops in our lockers update. That means our IT team can focus on bigger tasks; the portal handles the little things for us.”
Jim Culbert
Executive Director
Information Technology
DUVAL COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS
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