FAQs

In the 2016-2017 school year, Fisher Middle School embarked on a curriculum integration model that requires all 6th grade students to carry a device. In the 2018-2019 school year, we will continue the phased-in program by extending the initiative to the incoming 6th graders.This means that students in 6th, 7th & 8th grades will all be carrying a Chromebook at Fisher. The Digital Learning Initiative is an important addition to our learning program to further integrate technology within our core curriculum. The goal of the program is to build a sustainable, personalized digital learning environment to boost academic achievement and better prepare students for their future. Each student will be encouraged to own and carry his or her own Chromebook at Fisher. As we are a public school, we have made plans for assisting families for which the purchase of this educational tool may pose a hardship.
 

Click HERE if your student is leaving Fisher and you want to de-provision the parent funded Chromebook.

 

Click HERE for Warranty & Insurance Information.

 

Click HERE to view Lisa Fraser's DLI Parent Night Presentation.

 

Digital Learning
Why is Fisher implementing the Digital Learning Initiative?
Why is it important for students to have mobile devices?

Will the roll out of the DLI impact all grades?
How is the DLI being funded?
Will students receive instruction in digital citizenship?

Will the use of digital devices replace traditional teaching and learning?

 

Purchasing & Funding
Can I supply my own Chromebook for my student?
How much will the Chromebook cost?

Is the cost of insurance for damage or theft included in the purchase?
Can I purchase my own Apps & Extensions for the Chromebook?
What software will be provided on the purchased Chromebooks?

Student Responsibility
Will students be able to take their Chromebooks home with them?
Will students be able to keep their Chromebooks over the summer?
Will students be able to download and install software on their CB?
Will students be able to add apps from the Chrome Web Store?
Will students be able to charge their Chromebooks at school?
How will students get Chromebook training if needed?
Can students use their own device instead of a Chromebook?
Can students use Google accounts they have already created?
Can students personalize their Chromebook?
How can teachers monitor students' online behavior?
Do students bring their Chromebooks to school everyday?
Will the Chromebooks be carried in the student's backpack?
What happens if I forget my Chromebook?

Privacy, Safety & Security
Are Chromebooks safe?

Are Chromebooks protected against damage?
What happens if my Chromebook gets broken, lost or stolen?

 

Technology Specific
What is a Chromebook?

Why did LGUSD choose Chromebooks for the Digital Learning Initiative?
What if I do not have Internet access at home?
Where can I find free wireless Internet access?
Will LGUSD filters be active outside of school?
What model of Chromebook will students use?
Do Chromebooks support Flash?
Do Chromebooks support Microsoft Office products?

Learning Resources & Support

How can I print from my Chromebook at home?
What Apps are included on the Chromebooks?
Where can students get support on using a Chromebook?
Where can parents get support on using a Chromebook?
Are the teachers prepared to teach using Chrome OS?

 

Digital Learning

Why is Fisher implementing the Digital Learning Initiative (DLI)?
The LGUSD Educational Technology Plan (ETP) details how Los Gatos Union School District will create a digital teaching and learning environment that prepares students for high school, college and beyond. Computers, Internet access and digital resources are vital in education because they are essential in almost all 21st-century careers. 

When teachers leverage rich, interactive digital content in their instruction, students are provided with greater opportunity to personalize and tailor learning to their personal and immediate needs. In addition to engaging students in self-directed and relevant learning, this approach allows the teacher to help more students individually when needed rather than teaching large groups at the same pace through the same content. The DLI at Fisher will combine access to digital learning tools and resources with face-to-face teaching providing a differentiated learning experience.

Why is it important for students to have mobile devices?

When all students have mobile computing devices, teachers are more apt to provide small group and individualized instruction rather than lecturing to an entire class. When every student has a device, students have additional opportunities to develop higher order and critical thinking skills. Mobile devices allow students more choice in directing their learning, help them create products that demonstrate their knowledge and provide easy access to up-to-date information; all of this leads to increased student engagement and academic achievement. With anytime and anywhere learning, education extends beyond the classroom and the traditional school day. Students are able to create, track and manage their own learning through the use a Google Apps account. With increased access to collaborative tools like Google Drive, students will find it easier to manage their materials. Instead of using printed workbooks that are quickly outdated, students will be able to access current information. Digitally literate students rapidly shift from being consumers of information to becoming producers of creative and innovative work.
 
 

Will the roll out of the DLI impact all grades?

Currently, the roll out for DLI is a three-year, phased-in approach. In 2016-2017 the incoming 6th grade began implementing the 24/7, one-to-one Initiative. In 2018-2019, all grades at Fisher will be participating. As we are a public school, we have made plans for assisting families for which the purchase of this educational tool may pose a hardship.
 

How is the DLI being funded?

This is a parent-funded initiative that was approved by the LGUSD Board of Trustees. Parents are being asked to fund a Chromebook for their 6th grade student. In order for the initiative to be successful, Fisher will need the majority of parents to fund a device for their child.  As we are a public school, we have made plans for assisting families for which the purchase of this educational tool may pose a hardship.
 
 

Will students receive instruction in Digital Citizenship?

School is the perfect time to learn how to safely and securely surf the Internet, decipher fact from fiction in a sea of digital content, act responsibly on social networking sites and efficiently manage digital overload.  Digital Citizenship is not only embedded across the curriculum it is overtly taught in Fisher's JumpStart program so every student receives the same Digital Citizenship Curriculum.
 

Will the use of digital devices replace traditional teaching and learning?

No. At Fisher Middle School, teachers are the most important factor in education. While computers provide a number of benefits and opportunities for students that would not be possible without digital devices, the expert and caring guidance of teachers in our daily instruction is what ultimately helps students achieve and succeed.

 

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Purchasing & Funding

 

Can I supply my own Chromebook for my student?
No. The DLI at Fisher is a BYOSD – Bring Your Own Standardized Device. The device funded by this parent initiative will be for academic use only. The Digital Learning Initiative at Fisher has selected a standardized device that will be provisioned with special educational apps and resources by the selected vendor.   As we are a public school, we have made plans for assisting families for which the purchase of this educational tool may pose a hardship.

 

How much will the Chromebook cost?
The district has negotiated special educational pricing for the Chromebook. Visit the Purchasing & Funding page for more information.  As we are a public school, we have made plans for assisting families for which the purchase of this educational tool may pose a hardship.

 

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Is the cost of insurance for damage or theft included in the purchase?
The district has negotiated special pricing for insurance coverage available through Worth Avenue Group. Parents will be responsible for any repair or replacement. The school will provide a loaner Chromebook to any student needing one during the repair or replacement period. Parents are highly encouraged to insure their student's Chromebook.  Visit the Purchasing & Funding page for more information.

Can I purchase my own Apps & Extensions for the Chromebook?
No. The LGUSD provisioned Chromebooks do not support the installation of personal Apps &/or Extensions. Los Gatos Union School District will install or make available various educational applications from the Chrome web store.

What software will be provided on the purchased Chromebook?
Students are provided with:

  • Google Apps Account
  • Curriculum Online Resource Account
  • Educational Apps & Resources – Click HERE for a comprehensive list of our current Apps & Extensions.


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Student Responsibility


Will students be able to take their Chromebooks home?
Yes. Because the Chromebooks represent a deliberate effort to expand learning beyond the boundaries and schedule of school, it is vital that they be used at home. This also helps us extend the formal learning community to include parents, siblings and other people important in the lives of each student.

Will students be able to keep their Chromebooks over the summer?
Parent-funded Chromebooks will go home with students during the summer.  Chromebooks on loan will be returned to the school before the summer break for refurbishing.

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Will students be able to download and install software on their Chromebook?
No. At this time, Chromebooks do not support software installation. Rather than running traditional software, Chromebooks rely on web applications. Los Gatos Union School District will install or make available various educational applications from the Chrome web store.

Will students be able to add apps from the Chrome Web Store?
There are numerous apps and extensions that can be added to Chrome. They are listed under LGUSD in the web store.

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Will students be able to charge their Chromebooks at school?
One of the strengths of the Chromebook is its exceptional battery life. When fully charged, the Chromebook battery should last the entire school day. Chromebooks should be charged nightly at home so students can bring a fully charged device to school each day. 

How will students get Chromebook training if needed?
One of the goals of Los Gatos Union School District is to help students become self-directed learners. Students need to know how to find information to solve real-world problems. Needing help with a Chromebook can provide an authentic setting in which students can practice problem-solving and research skills. Resources can be found on the web and on the Student Resource Site for Digital Learning. Students and parents can find tutorials, frequently asked questions, and entire video courses here.

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Can students use their own devices instead of a Chromebook?
The Chromebook is the only device endorsed for this initiative. It will allow the school system to monitor student use at school and push out applications that students can use for classwork. While many other devices exist, the Chromebook was selected for numerous factors including its light weight, long battery life, integration with Google Apps for Education, security, compatibility with management tools, integrated keyboard and cost. The Chromebooks will contain additional services and filters that other purchased Chromebooks will not and they are managed by district personnel.

Can students use Google accounts they have already created?
Los Gatos Union School District uses Google Apps for Education and the account that LGUSD created will be the account supported on the Chromebooks. Fisher has also purchased apps and services that will only function with the LGUSD account. Students will continue logging into their assigned Google Apps account with their LGUSD issued credentials to access the content and tools used to support their learning.

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Can students personalize their Chromebook?
The school will provide the parameters for personalization. Loaned Chromebooks can not be personalized. Students are strongly encouraged to use a case on their parent-funded Chromebook.

How can teachers monitor students' online behavior and keep them on task?
Teachers will be able to monitor assignment completion and document sharing using Google Classrooms. Students and teachers have an app called GoGuardian which allows teachers to remotely monitor student work. The GoGuardian Teacher Dashboard provides teachers with a birds-eye view of student work and desktop. GoGuardian Remote Control allows teachers to see what their students are looking at while in school. In addition, teachers will be able to send URLs to the whole class or individualized messages to students. 

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Do students bring their Chromebooks to school everyday?
Yes, students will need to bring their device to school everyday.

Will the Chromebooks be carried in the students backpacks along with the textbooks?
Students are expected to carry their Chromebook in their backpacks. Regarding textbooks, students are provided with a set of textbooks for home use that stay at home. During PE, lockers are available for backpack storage.

What happens if I forget my Chromebook?
Students are expected to bring their Chromebook everyday as an instructional tool. In an unanticipated event that the student does not have their Chromebook a loaner will be provided for classroom use.

 
 
Technology Specific
 

What is a Chromebook?
A Chromebook has a traditional physical shape of a laptop but does not run a traditional operating system (think Windows or OSX). Chromebooks run Google's operating system; the Chrome operating system is built for (1) the web, (2) security and (3) Chromebooks. Advertised specs vary from model to model. Light weight and long battery life are a staple of each model.

Why were Chromebooks selected for the Digital Learning Initiative?
Chromebooks were chosen because they are easy to use, have built-in security features, management tools, extended battery life, and teacher training is focused on using Google Apps for Education and Google Classroom.

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What model of Chromebook will students use?
HP Chromebook 14 G5 Notebook   

Do Chromebooks support Flash?
Adobe Flash Player is directly integrated with Google Chrome and enabled by default. Available updates for Adobe Flash Player are automatically included in Chrome system updates. While Chrome supports Flash, it does not support other plug-ins like Java and Silverlight.

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Do Chromebooks support Microsoft Office products?
Chromebooks are designed to work seamlessly with Google Apps for Education products rather than Microsoft Office products. The district is using Google Apps for Education for several key reasons:

  1. The computer skills that students learn on a Chromebook are easily transferable to Microsoft Office products. Google Docs are very similar to Microsoft Office products. The look may vary, but the ways in which each tool can be used are the same. Therefore, the skills that are learned using Google Apps for Education can be quickly and easily transferred to other types of software such as Microsoft Office.
  2. The use of Google Apps is becoming more and more prevalent. Currently, there are 120 million users of Google Drive and more than 5 million businesses and institutions using Google Apps. Furthermore, industry experts predict that up to 50 percent of all businesses will use Google Apps by the end of the decade. Click here to see an article by CNN Money describing the increased prevalence of Google Apps. With the rapid changes in technology, it is essential that students develop skills that can be easily transferred to new and emerging technologies.
  3. Google Apps for Education provides students with anytime, anywhere access. Google products are available from any machine at any time. Because Google Docs are cloud-based, students will have access to their work even if they do not have access to their Chromebook. Unlike Microsoft products, parents will not need to purchase any software. By logging in to the student's lgusd.org account, students will be able to access their work from any device with Internet access. Students who do not have access to the Internet can still complete their work in offline mode.

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Privacy, Safety & Security

Are Chromebooks Safe?
Yes! There are many layers of safety and security involved with our Fisher Digital Learning Initiative. The safest way to use a computer is under the supervision of an adult. We also ensure that our students grow each year as digital citizens. Parents can learn about the district's digital citizenship curriculum and download Internet safety resources here.

  • When students take the Chromebooks home, they will be subject to the same Internet filter that protects the students in school. The "always on" content filtering blocks harmful and inappropriate websites no matter where the student accesses the Internet--from school, home, or overseas--the filter is always on!
  • Chromebooks have built-in anti-virus software that is always up-to-date.
  • Chromebooks are secure.

We take student data privacy seriously. Read about how the district complies with local, state, and federal student data privacy regulations--and takes compliance a step further by listing each of our key student applications and how we protect student data.
 
 

What happens if the Chromebook gets broken, lost, or stolen?
If your child's Chromebook gets broken, lost, or stolen, please have your child report it to the Fisher ChromeDepot, which is located in our front office.  Your child will be issued a temporary loaner Chromebook while yours is being repaired. If your Chromebook is still under the 1-year warranty coverage, or if you have purchased insurance for your Chromebook, our DLI Team will handle the repair for you. If your device is no longer under warranty, and you have not purchased insurance, you will be responsible for repairing or replacing your device. The DLI Team highly recommends that parents purchase insurance to cover the cost of damaged, lost or stolen devices.

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What if I don't have internet access at home?
Google Docs allow the user to work in offline mode so students can complete classwork at home, even without internet access. Files are saved locally to the Chromebook, then automatically updated the next time a wireless connection is detected. So a student can start a project at school and finish it at home, even without an Internet connection. When the student returns to school the next day, anything he or she worked on at home will be automatically updated to their Google Drive. Offline mode must be enabled before students can use it. Please see the instructions below on how to enable offline mode. In offline mode, student can edit their documents and presentations. Spreadsheets, however, are view-only for now.


How to Enable Offline Access:
  • Step 1. To enable offline access, first go into your Google Drive. On the left-hand side, select "Offline."
  • Step 2. Click the blue button labeled "Enable offline."
  • Step 3. Your files will now sync for offline editing. Depending on the number of files in your drive, this may take a while. When it is finished, you will be able to open and edit files offline. When offline, you can open and edit Google documents and presentations. For now, spreadsheets are view-only.

Where do I find free internet access?

Free Internet options:

  • All Los Gatos public libraries offer free wireless Internet, in addition to numerous businesses throughout the county. To see a map of wireless locations in Los Gatos, click this link.
  • Affordable Internet Options:
    If you are interested in purchasing wireless access to the Internet, there are many options. If your children qualify for free and reduced-price school lunches, you may be eligible to receive Internet home service from Comcast Internet Essentials for as little at $10 per month.  LGUSD does not receive any compensation for recommending Comcast Internet Essentials


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Learning Resources

What Apps are included on the Chromebooks?
The Chromebooks ship ready to go with many educational Apps & Extensions!  The Fisher teachers and administration are always evaluating new educational apps & Extensions for the Chromebooks to provide a rich learning experience for students.  

Where can students get support on using a Chromebook?
Teachers at Fisher integrate the use of technology throughout the curriculum. While the skills needed to operate the Chromebooks and Apps are embedded in each assignment by the classroom teacher, additional specific Chromebook lessons are available on the Student Resource Site.  Click HERE to visit the Resource Site.

Where can parents get support on using a Chromebook?
Parents can also use the Chromebook lessons made available to the Student Resource Site. In addition parents can use the Google Apps for Education site to learn more about using Chrome OS.  Click HERE to visit the Resource Site.

 

Are the teachers prepared to teach using Chrome OS?

Most teachers at Fisher have obtained at least one level of Google Certification, with several having completed Levels 1 & 2. By August of 2018, all staff at Fisher Middle School will be certified through the Google Apps for Education Certification Program.

 

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