Desktop Research: Trends Influencing Decisions about High-Speed Networking for Schools and School Systems

The initial listing of news clippings was culled from a variety of sources we monitor on a regular basis.

We'd love to see your press clippings here as well! Please use the edit this page button to add more, or add comments on how or why you think they may or may not be important. As is the convention throughout the Horizon Project Wiki, we ask you to identify items you think are of high interest to us, as I have done here by typing 4 tilde (~) characters-- - Sam Sam Jan 27, 2015. This will help us to sift through the articles and determine which ones resonate most strongly with the board as a whole.

Recommended Reading

  • National Broadband Plan, Chapter 11: Education jbillings jbillings May 16, 2015)
    The National Broadband Plan provides three recommendations with implication for high-speed networking capabilities in schools: supporting and promoting online learning, unlocking the value of data and improving transparency, and modernizing educational broadband infrastructure. - Sam Sam May 6, 2015- keith.bockwoldt keith.bockwoldt May 17, 2015
  • The Impact of Broadband on Education
    Greater broadband capability has the potential to transform education from the static model of the traditional classroom to a more learner-centered interactive process. However, the lack of availability in some areas and the lack of support in areas where broadband is available greatly impacts these transformative effects.- jmorrison jmorrison May 8, 2015- keith.bockwoldt keith.bockwoldt May 17, 2015
  • Broadband and Education: The Promises, the Challenges
    Online and blended learning, the need for access to data, and the implementation of virtual schools in many states are a few of the diverse reasons that better networking and broadband capabilities are imperative in K-12 education.
  • Closing the Broadband Gap for Students and Teachers
    The internet connectivity in many schools matches that of private homes. As there are exponentially more people using the internet in a school setting at any given time, this creates an obvious problem. The ConnectED Initiative was launched as a response to this problem. ( - Sam Sam May 6, 2015
  • The Bandwidth Schools Have and the Bandwidth They Need jbillings jbillings May 16, 2015)
    Bandwidth is a consideration not only for pedagogical activities, but also for high-stakes testing and the implementation of digital textbooks. Consideration of networking capabilities and bandwidth requirements should include attention to individual needs and peak demand.- keith.bockwoldt keith.bockwoldt May 17, 2015
  • Technology, Broadband and Education: Advancing the Education for All Agenda
    The use of technology in education is ubiquitous, but the type of technology in use varies greatly and is largely dependent on bandwidth capabilities. Broadband allows for video streaming and other highly engaging activities, and is necessary to support the 1:1 trend.- keith.bockwoldt keith.bockwoldt May 17, 2015 - marieb marieb May 18, 2015 All kids will need the (admittedly squishily defined) 21st century skills referenced in this report. Equity demands access for all. The report talks about access at school & home, but the 2010 NETP calls for anytime, anywhere access - an even bigger equity gap.
  • Broadband for Schools: Do We Need Gbps Bandwidth?
    With a different perspective on bandwidth, the author here urges schools to carefully consider their needs and plan accordingly. Certain activities and types of media do not require large bandwidth, and those that do can be hosted on the school’s server to prevent delays. Considering the school’s networking infrastructure is key.
  • Seven Guidelines to Support Standardized Testing
    The need for high-speed networking and greater bandwidth goes beyond the pedagogical to include standardized testing needs. Limited testing windows mean high density traffic and the necessity for a responsive system that can handle the workload.
  • Technology in Education
    Technology infrastructure needs differ from school to school, but the common thread is that they all need increased bandwidth capability. Though the federal government remains committed to facilitating technology access through programs such as E-Rate, disparities persist.- jmorrison jmorrison May 8, 2015- keith.bockwoldt keith.bockwoldt May 17, 2015
  • Top Ten Issues Shaping Today's Technology Uses in Education jbillings jbillings May 16, 2015)
    Four of the top ten issues listed for K-12 education have direct impact on the decision-making process regarding high-speed networking. These are funding, the Digital Divide, privacy and safety, and viruses and hacking. In determining the networking needs of the schools, each of these must be addressed.
    There are short-term, mid-term, and long-term trends to be aware of when choosing networking for schools. Blended learning, learning spaces, open educational resources, measured learning, collaboration, and innovation are the six top trends to watch.- KSchwartz KSchwartz May 13, 2015
  • Blended Learning jbillings jbillings May 16, 2015)
    Blended learning offers a personalized learning experience through the integration of online and face-to-face learning. Models include the following: flex, rotation, a la carte, and enriched virtual. Networking capabilities can affect blended learning.
  • Learning Spaces
    The space in which learning occurs influences learning. This includes not only the physical space, but also the virtual. Networking capabilities affect the student’s ability to move through and within that virtual space.- keith.bockwoldt keith.bockwoldt May 17, 2015
  • Open Educational Resources jbillings jbillings May 16, 2015)
    Open educational resources are used for teaching, learning and researching. They reside in the public domain, and can be freely accessed. This access is affected by networking capabilities.
  • Making Student Data Part of the Conversation
    Measured learning requires a continuous cycle of student assessment and subsequent data analysis. Data-driven educational models are becoming the norm, and student data must be secured. Tight network security is paramount.
  • Universal Service Program for Schools and Libraries (E-Rate)
    The Schools and Libraries (or E-Rate) program makes high-speed networking more affordable for schools by providing discounts on service. Higher discounts are available for more impoverished schools. The cap for the program in 2015 is $3.9 billion.- KSchwartz KSchwartz May 13, 2015- keith.bockwoldt keith.bockwoldt May 17, 2015
  • Children’s Internet Protection Act
    Implemented in 2000 to help shield minors from harmful internet content, CIPA enforces certain requirements for schools and libraries that receive discounts through the FCC’s E-Rate program. Some of these requirements include filtering and monitoring internet content as well as proper training for minors regarding appropriate online behavior.
  • 5 BYOD Policy Questions and Answers for School Wireless Networks
    Bring Your Own Device policies are currently trending in response to decreased school budgets and increased demands for technology in the classroom. An effective BYOD initiative requires clear policies, careful planning, and a supportive high-speed network.- jmorrison jmorrison May 8, 2015- marcia.mardis marcia.mardis May 18, 2015As one I2 K-20 member said, "BYOD is what school are doing," so like it or lump it, it is a force to reckon with!
  • From Zero to Wireless in 4 Essential Steps
    The 1:1 trend in K-12 education requires wireless networking capabilities. Whole school wireless networking cannot be accomplished with a few wireless routers from the local Best Buy. Issues to consider include the existing wired network capabilities, filtering, access points, and speed.
  • Schools Say Next-Generation Firewalls Simplify Security Management
    Next-generation firewalls are a must-have in order to comply with CIPA and allow BYOD policies to succeed. Tighter security and greater visibility are two benefits of next-gen firewalls. Additionally, older firewalls cannot keep up with increased high-speed capability.
    Network access control (NAC) is designed to control the role of the user and to enforce controlled access policies. Though most companies can accomplish these things with traditional systems, BYOD makes NAC a requirement for schools.
  • Most States Funding Schools Less Than Before the Recession
    State funding cuts have a high impact on school budgets, including technology budgets. Per-student funding is still at below pre-recession levels, affecting state initiatives to improve students’ 21st century skills. Acquiring sufficient high-speed networking and bandwidth will require creative accounting or federal interventions such as the E-Rate program in many cases.
  • Survey: Despite Budget Cuts, Schools Prioritize Technology
    Standardized testing, though controversial, has impacted education positively by demanding current technology, high-speed networking, and increased broadband width. However, levels still lag behind the ideal. District level goals are more often attained than individual classroom goals.- jmorrison jmorrison May 8, 2015- KSchwartz KSchwartz May 13, 2015
  • N.Y. Launches Ambitious Plan to Spread Broadband Technology
    New York's governor Andrew Cuomo recently announced a plan to use $500 million in state money garnered from capital funds from bank settlements and make it available over the next four years to telecommunications companies as a dollar-for-dollar match to build out broadband and fiber systems, bringing services to areas that currently go without. Currently students in Catskill Central School District have access to high-speed internet while at school, but the students in its 1-to-1 laptop program are often unable to connect at home which makes flipped instruction difficult and gives an unfair disadvantage to students who cannot access learning materials or explore concepts they find interesting unless they are at school.
  • Connectivity is Critical: 33 Ways Broadband Boosts Learning jbillings jbillings May 16, 2015)
    This list of trends in k-12 schools proves that reliable internet access is critical for schools as it enables personalized learning and connections with the real world; it helps meet special needs and powers professional development; and it boosts learning, productivity and collaboration.- jmorrison jmorrison May 8, 2015- keith.bockwoldt keith.bockwoldt May 17, 2015 - marieb marieb May 18, 2015
  • The need for high speed connectivity is critical to the success of all of the longitudinal data projects that propose to collect, analyze, and render useful the ever-increasing student data currently being gathered under the umbrella of Big Data and Predictive Analytics. The promise of distributed Adaptive Learning is dependent upon high speed connectivity.
  • Keeping Pace with K-12 Digital Learning jbillings jbillings May 16, 2015)
    This report describes access, activity, and outcomes of digital learning across U.S. education. It describes how policies that exist at the state level influence the extent to which digital learning is available to students. - marieb marieb May 18, 2015 Important section is policy: "The three are student choice at the school level, the existence and strength of charter school laws, and student choice at the course level. States that have all three of these, or particularly strong policies in two of the three, tend to have the most digital learning opportunities for students. States that have none of these, or a single one that is not especially strong, tend to have the fewest digital learning opportunities." I see a chicken-and-egg issue with network availability as catalyst for policy.
  • How Schools Are Making Mobile Learning Work]]
    This article describes how three different school districts have adopted a mobile learning environment including Merced Union High School District which has installed wireless access points in every classroom, and instead of textbooks, the school's freshman and sophomore classes are issued Chromebooks; or, if they prefer, they can bring their own devices. MUHS district leaders partnered with local government to purchase fiber to connect the district office with its school sites.