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Parents

Chromebooks

FAQ: Device Expectations

Is a Chromebook required?

Technology integrated into effective instructional practices will support students and staff to grow as creators, contributors, and empowered, connected learners so that each person is prepared to achieve a lifetime of personal success. The PBIS expectations of respect, responsibility, and safety apply to all students when using technology. Staff may establish additional expectations for the use of technology depending on their instructional objectives, and students are required to follow the terms and protocols outlined by the teacher. Technology should never be used in a manner that disrupts the educational environment and is strictly forbidden in restrooms and locker room areas. At all times, students are subject to Board Policy #605.70: Technology Use by Students.
May a student bring a device other than a Chromebook?
Devices will be provided to students when the educational program requires the use of technology. Students who choose to bring a personal electronic device (cell phone, iPod, e-readers, etc.) to school do so at their own risk and are subject to building-wide expectations. Ankeny Community Schools is not responsible for lost, damaged, or stolen items. The use of any electronic devices by students is also subject to Board Policy #605.70.
What comes with a Chromebook?
The district has purchased a case and power adapter for each Chromebook. We require students to use these accessories to protect and charge their devices. Stickers, labels, and markings other than the district-issued inventory tags should not be applied to the Chromebook or accessories. Students may personalize their case with removable decorations (keyrings, luggage tags, etc) or buy a wireless mouse, but they should not attempt any permanent changes or alterations. Headphones/earbuds are strongly encouraged and may be required for some classes.

What if a student Chromebook is not working?
Who should students contact for technical support?
Students must report it to their classroom teacher or digital learning teacher as soon as possible. Failure to do so may result in delayed repairs and additional costs to families. Under no circumstances should a student attempt to physically repair a broken Chromebook. Instead, the school will document the problem and coordinate with other Ankeny personnel to find a solution.

How can I learn more about Google Apps for Education (GAFE) and Chromebooks?
Parents and families, please talk to your child’s teacher about specific questions relating to the use of technology in his or her classroom. Additional information about Google Apps for Education (GAFE) and Chromebooks is available at https://www.google.com/edu/training/get-trained/.
When and where will students be allowed to use their Chromebook?

Our purpose in moving towards a 1:1 environment is to facilitate anytime, anywhere learning. Students will be permitted to use their devices throughout the school day and at home with parent or family permission. Buildings may set restrictions on the use of Chromebooks in certain areas (locker room, lunch tables, etc) in order to maintain a safe and orderly learning environment. Teachers may also set additional expectations according to their instructional goals and activities. At all times, students are subject to board policies.

FAQ: Wireless Access & Connectivity

Why can't I access the internet outside of school?

All Chromebook activity must be directed through our district web filter using a proxy service. This happens automatically when students are connected to the school network. Other networks may require their own proxy services. Many hotels and coffee shops have these types of connections. Home users may also have a proxy service on their personal wireless network. Student Chromebooks may not function properly in these situations, due to the conflicting nature of proxy services and the need for direct access to the district web filter.

While the district cannot anticipate every possible connection issue outside of school, the following steps will assist most students in accessing the internet from a home network.

Connect the Chromebook to your home WiFi network.
Most home networks will require a security key to connect new devices. Students will need to ask their parents for this information or contact the family’s internet service provider for assistance.

Login to the Chromebook and open the Chrome browser.
Students should be automatically accepted into our filtering system using their Google account. If you are unable to access any websites or are experiencing extremely slow connection speeds, attempt the following steps.

Clear the Browser History.
In the top-right corner of the browser window, click the Chrome menu button.
Click History and recent tabs > History or hold Ctrl+H.
Click the button Clear browsing data… A dialog box will appear.
Clear your entire browsing history by selecting the beginning of time from the drop-down menu.
Check all eight of the boxes.
Click the button Clear browsing data.
Restart the Chromebook and attempt to access a website again.
If you are still unable to access the internet or are experiencing extremely slow connections, continue on.

Reset Chrome to the Default Settings.
In the top-right corner of the browser window, click the Chrome menu button.
Select Settings.
At the bottom, click Show advanced settings.
Under the section “Reset settings”, click Reset settings.
In the dialog that appears, click Reset.
Restart the Chromebook and attempt to access a website again.
If you are still unable to access the internet or are experiencing extremely slow connections, continue on.
If the previous troubleshooting steps fail, families are encouraged to contact their internet service provider for assistance. In some cases, families may need to upgrade their home network equipment or bandwidth in order to connect additional wireless devices.

Will I be able to use the Chromebook without internet access?

One reason for selecting Chromebooks for our 1:1 initiative is the increasing availability of apps and resources that are available offline. Many of the core Google Apps, including Calendar and Drive, can function when students are not connected to the internet. However, these features must be enabled by the student. Please refer to the following Google support documents for more information.

Where can I find free WiFi in Ankeny?

The Ankeny Community School District is dedicated to preparing every learner with the knowledge and skills to achieve a lifetime of personal success. Essential to this task is the ability to use technology effectively and responsibly in a way that enhances the learning experience of every student. The district, guided by the work of the Technology Leadership Team, has chosen the Google Chromebook as the device for students grades 5-9. We recognize that other devices are available to families, but in order to guarantee full access to our curriculum and to ensure consistency for our staff in planning and preparing instruction, we require all students to use their school-issued Chromebook and Google Apps account while in school. Reasonable accommodations will be made for families who choose not to bring the device home or who opt to use a different device outside of school. Free, filtered WiFi is available in all Ankeny Community School District buildings. Please contact the building principal with questions about internet access outside of school hours. Kirkendall Public Library also provides free internet access to all patrons, and an increasing number of area businesses — including HyVee and McDonalds — provide WiFi access to customers.

FAQ: At Home

What are the expectations for students using the Chromebook at home?

Students may be asked to complete a variety of online activities throughout the learning process. This may include (but is not limited to) playing educational games, creating collaborative documents, emailing peers, and watching video clips. Questions about specific online learning activities should be directed to the student’s teacher or building administrator. Families will always have the ultimate say in how devices are used in the home, and the district encourages parents to talk with their children about safe online behaviors and setting limits on screen time. Online activity on student Chromebooks is constantly monitored by our district web filter, regardless of the location of the device.
What if a students forgets the Chromebook at home/at school?

Chromebooks are an essential instructional material, much like textbooks or school supplies. Students will be responsible for bringing them to class each day and taking them home each afternoon. We ask that families charge the devices overnight so that they are ready to be used first thing in the morning. If you have specific questions about how a particular school responds to students who are not prepared for class, please contact the student’s teacher or building principal.

FAQ: Safety & Security

Does the district monitor students' online behavior? How is their activity filtered?
Can a parent access the student's browsing history?

All student Chromebooks utilize a proxy service which directs any online activity through our district web filter in accordance with federal eRate guidelines. The filtering process collects web URL’s for all traffic generated by the Chromebooks, regardless of the physical location of the device. The district does not actively monitor this traffic unless a direct request is made by the building administrator.

To access the browsing history on a Chromebook, choose History (Ctrl + H) from the menu in the top right corner of a browser window. Please note that students may erase their browsing history, so it is not the best way to monitor their online activity. Parents are always encouraged to designate a spot in the home where the student can be actively monitored by an adult if online behavior is a concern.

What happens if a Chromebook is lost, damaged, or stolen?

As with any district property issued to students, Iowa statute allows the district to obtain reimbursement from, or on behalf of, students for any damage to, loss of, or failure to return school property. Fines will be assessed at the discretion of building administration at the rate of $25 per repair incident. Fines will not be assessed for manufacturer defaults or incidental damage resulting from normal wear and tear (ie. minor cosmetic marks). The fine schedule will be updated on an annual basis.
Any damage to, or loss of, student technology devices must be reported to the district immediately. Failure to do so may result in delayed repairs or increased fines. Under no circumstances should a student attempt to repair a damaged device or pay for the device to be repaired by an agency other than Ankeny Community Schools. If you have any questions or concerns regarding technology fines, please contact the building administrator.

View the full Ankeny 1:1 Initiative Plan here.