Program FAQ

Fisher's 1:1 family-funded Chromebook program is well established in the community. There is an annual information night in the spring with parents of 5th grade students who are planning to attend Fisher in the fall, however, to assist families new to Fisher as well as anyone seeking information, this set of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) has been put together. If you question is not answered below, please reach out to the Fisher administrators to get your question answer.
 

Current Hot Topics:

Background Information

  1. Why is Fisher implementing 1:1 Chromebooks?
  2. Why is it important for students to have mobile devices?
  3. How are 1:1 Chromebooks being funded?
  4. Will students receive instruction in digital citizenship?
  5. Will digital devices replace traditional teaching and learning?

Technology Specific

  1. What is a Chromebook?
  2. Why did LGUSD choose Chromebooks for the 1:1 program?
  3. What model of Chromebooks will students use?
  4. What if I do not have internet access at home?
  5. Where can I find free wireless internet access?
  6. Will LGUSD filters be active outside of school?
  7. Can students print from an LGUSD-provisioned Chromebook at home?
  8. Do Chromebooks support Microsoft Office products?

Purchasing A Chromebook

  1. Can I supply my own Chromebook for my student?
  2. How much will the Chromebook cost?
  3. Is the cost of insurance for damage or theft included in the purchase?
  4. Can I purchase insurance after I've purchased a Chromebook?
  5. What happens if the Chromebook is damaged, lost, or stolen?
  6. Can I purchase my own apps and extensions for the Chromebook?
  7. What software will be provided on the purchased Chromebooks?
  8. What happens to the Chromebook when my student leaves Fisher?

Student Responsibility

  1. Can students use their own device instead of a Chromebook?
  2. Can students use Google accounts they have already created?
  3. Will students be able to take their Chromebooks home with them?
  4. Will students be able to keep their Chromebooks over the summer?
  5. Do students bring their Chromebooks to school everyday?
  6. Will the Chromebooks be carried in the student's backpack?
  7. Will students be able to charge their Chromebooks at school?
  8. What happens if I forget my Chromebook?
  9. How can teachers monitor students' online behavior?
  10. Can students personalize their Chromebook?
  11. Will students be able to download and install software on their Chromebook?
  12. Will students be able to add apps and extensions from the Chrome Web Store?
  13. How will students get Chromebook training if needed?

Privacy & Security

  1. How does the District protect student privacy?
  2. Are Chromebooks secure?

Chromebook Resources & Support

  1. Where can students get support on using a Chromebook?
  2. Where can families get support on using a Chromebook?
  3. Are the teachers trained to use Chrome OS and the Google platform?
 

Background Information

1. Why is Fisher implementing 1:1 Chromebooks?

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. This program will combine access to digital learning tools and resources with face-to-face teaching providing a differentiated learning experience.
 
 

2. 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 of a Google 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.

Back to Top
 

3. How are 1:1 Chromebooks 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 student. In order for the program to be successful, Fisher needs 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.

Back to Top
 

4. Will students receive instruction in Digital Citizenship?

School is the perfect time to learn how to safely and securely surf the Internet, identify misinformation 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.
 

5. Will 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.
 
 

Technology Specific

1. 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 MacOS). Instead, Chromebooks run Google's Chrome operating system. The Chrome operating system is built for (1) the web, (2) security and (3) Chromebooks. While advertised specs vary from model to model, light weight and long battery life are a staple of each model.
 


2. Why were Chromebooks selected for the 1:1 Chromebook program?

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 Workspace and Google Classroom.
 
 

3. What model of Chromebook will students use?

For the 2020-21 school year, students will use the Lenovo 100e (Generation 2) with a 11.6" display. Click to view more detailed specs.
 
 

4. What if I do not have internet access at home?

Google Workspace Apps (and others) 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 click here to see the instructions on how to enable offline mode.
 
 

5. Where do I find free internet access?

Free Internet options:
The Los Gatos public library offers free wireless internet, in addition to numerous businesses throughout the county.
 
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 $9.95 per month. LGUSD does not receive any compensation for recommending Comcast Internet Essentials
 
 

6. Will LGUSD internet filters be active outside of school?

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.
 
 

7. Can students print from an LGUSD-provisioned Chromebook at home?

 
 

8. Do Chromebooks support Microsoft Office products?

Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides are designed to seamlessly open, edit, and save Microsoft Office file formats.
 
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.
 
 

Purchasing A Chromebook

1. Can I supply my own Chromebook for my student?

No. The 1:1 Chromebook program at Fisher is a BYOSD – Bring Your Own Standardized Device. The device, although funded by families, is for academic use only and needs to be provisioned by the district to fulfill our legal responsibilities. With family and faculty input, Fisher has selected a standardized device that will be provisioned with educational apps and resources by our 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.
 
 

2. How much will the Chromebook cost?

The district has negotiated special educational pricing for the Chromebook. Visit the Purchase A Chromebook 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.
 
 

3. Is the cost of insurance for damage or theft included in the purchase?

No. However, the district has negotiated special pricing for insurance coverage that families can choose to purchase. Families are highly encouraged to insure their student's Chromebook. Even with insurance, families are responsible for any repair or replacement. Please review the Repair Process page and, if necessary, contact the Fisher front office for further guidance. Upon request, the school will provide a loaner Chromebook to any student needing one during the repair or replacement period.
 
 

4. Can I purchase insurance after I've purchased a Chromebook?

Yes. The district has negotiated special pricing for insurance coverage that families can choose to purchase. Families are highly encouraged to insure their student's Chromebook. Even with insurance, families are responsible for any repair or replacement. Please review the Repair Process page and, if necessary, contact the Fisher front office for further guidance. Upon request, the school will provide a loaner Chromebook to any student needing one during the repair or replacement period. The window for purchasing insurance closed in November; insurance will be available in the spring for new purchases.
 
 

5. What happens if the Chromebook is damaged, lost, or stolen?

If your Chromebook is damaged, lost or stolen, please refer to the Repair Process page to determine next steps. If it is a school-owned device, please contact [email protected]
 

6. Can I purchase my own apps and extensions for the Chromebook?

No. District-provisioned Chromebooks do not support the installation of personal apps and/or extensions. Los Gatos Union School District will install or make available various educational apps from the Chrome Web Store.
 
 

7. What software will be provided on the purchased Chromebook?

Students are provided with a Google account with access to the Google Workspace suite of apps which includes Gmail, Drive, Docs, Slides, Sheets, Drawings, Forms, Classroom, and more. These apps serve as email, storage, word processing, spreadsheets, presentation software, and more. Students have access to other services as part of course curriculum and to address faculty-identified education needs.
 
 

8. What happens to the Chromebook when my student leaves Fisher?

When a student leaves Fisher Middle School, the district must first de-provision the Chromebook or the student will not be able to use the device. Please follow these instructions to make sure your student will be able to use your family-funded Chromebook.
 
Contact [email protected] and please include your student's first & last name in the email.
 
 

Student Responsibility

1. Can students use their own devices instead of a Chromebook?

No. The Chromebook is the only device endorsed for this program. While many other devices exist, the Chromebook was selected for numerous factors including its light weight, long battery life, integration with Google Workspace, security, compatibility with management tools, integrated keyboard and cost. The Chromebooks are managed by district personnel and will be provisioned with additional services and filters that other purchased Chromebooks will not.
 
 

2. Can students use Google accounts they have already created?

No. Los Gatos Union School District uses Google Workspace and the account that LGUSD created will be the account supported on the Chromebooks. This account was created when a student enrolled in the district and will be used through the end of 8th grade. Online services, such as apps, that have been purchased will only function with the LGUSD account. 
 
 

3. Will students be able to take their Chromebooks home with them?

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.
 
 

4. 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.
 
 

5. Do students bring their Chromebooks to school everyday?

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

6. 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.
 
 

7. Will students be able to charge their Chromebooks at school?

No. 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.
 
 

8. What happens if I forget my Chromebook?

Students are expected to bring their fully-charged Chromebook everyday as an instructional tool. In the unanticipated event that a student does not have their Chromebook, a limited number of classroom loaners will be available for teachers to loan out for use in their classroom.
 
 

9. How can teachers monitor students' online behavior and keep them on task?

Teachers are 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 opened windows. This service only works while students are on campus during school hours. It does not work at home. The District internet filter continues to block inappropriate websites anywhere at anytime.
 
 

10. 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 family-purchased Chromebook.
 
 

11. Will students be able to download and/or install software on their Chromebook?

No. At this time, Chromebooks do not support software installation. Rather than running traditional software, Chromebooks rely on web apps. Los Gatos Union School District will install or make available various educational applications from the Chrome Web Store.
 
 

12. Will students be able to add apps and extensions from the Chrome Web Store?

There are numerous apps and extensions that can be added to Chrome. They are listed under "For lgusd.org" in the web store.
 
 

13. 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. Teachers will provide instruction on discipline-specific tools. Further assistance can be found on the Getting Started page.
 
 

Privacy & Security

1. How does the District protect student privacy?

LGUSD takes student data privacy seriously. Read our Privacy and Safety page to learn how the district and the software it uses complies with local, state, and federal student data privacy regulations.
 
 

2. Are Chromebooks secure?

Yes! There are many layers of safety and security involved with our 1:1 Chromebook program. The safest way to use a computer is under the supervision of an adult, however, we also ensure that our students grow each year as digital citizens through embedded digital citizen lessons in our curriculum.
 
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.
 
 

Chromebook Resources & Support

1. Where can students get support on using a Chromebook?

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. Teachers will provide instruction on discipline-specific tools. Further assistance can be found on our Getting Started page.
 
 

2. Where can families get support on using a Chromebook?

Families can find the answer to their question on any number of resources found online. We recommend starting your search on our Getting Started page.
 
 

3. Are the teachers trained to use Chrome OS and the Google platform?

Yes! In addition to years of experience on the Chrome platform, Fisher teachers have completed Google's Fundamentals training course and some have even completed the Advanced training course as well. Further, teachers have taken a variety of personal steps to grow their skills and knowledge of an ever-growing number of online apps. Some teachers have chosen to complete the Google Educator Level 1 and Level 2 certifications, while others have completed training for a variety of online education apps through the District's personal technology professional development program, Tech Charge.