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Piedmont school computer lab


A business case to clarify the goals and objectives of a computer lab upgrade in Piedmont Avenue School

A business case to clarify the goals and objectives of a computer lab upgrade in Piedmont Avenue School

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  • 1. Computer Lab Project “ Lighting the fire” Piedmont School Oakland, CA
  • 2. Piedmont School Background
    • City of Oakland School District
    • K – 5 public education
    • 341 students
    • 20+ teachers
    • Demographics
    • Test scores
    • Recent Press
  • 3. Current Situation
    • The computer lab at Piedmont School is currently not being used by the students and teachers
      • Network : computers not connected to internet or other classes
      • Print : computers unable to print and show student work to others
      • Equipment : 12+ years old and the new software does not work properly
      • Resources : No one to develop, maintain, and facilitate the computer lab
      • Training : No teacher training in how to use the computing resources
      • IT Strategy : none in place
      • Access : Over 50% of students have no access to connected computers outside of the school
      • Facility : computer lab poorly designed layout and student experience
      • Classroom : Each classroom has 4 computers but 4 is not enough to use them effectively and they are not connected to any LAN or WAN so they are isolated
  • 4. Typical Usage for Computers in K-5
    • Support and enhance “differential instruction” where all students learn at their level (e.g. Dr. Seuss versus Harry Potter)
    • Math training programs and “math facts” for accelerated development of fundamental skills, testing and High School prep
    • Research projects, such as Science, History, Current Events, and other special projects
    • Develop the basic computer skills which put all kids on a equal footing in the future
    • Provide directed learning activities where kids can use computers to develop specific skills and teachers can focus on individuals or small groups for targeted learning projects
    These activities are either not happening at Piedmont School, or are severely hampered by the current computer facility
  • 5. Benchmark comparisons
    • School examples
      • Piedmont
      • Montlcair
      • Orinda
      • Lafayette
  • 6. Other Schools Lincoln Elementary Lincoln Elementary Hoover Elementary
  • 7. The Opportunity (ROI)
  • 8. Funding Strategy
    • Create the project justification
    • Identify local funding sources that want to tangibly improve the Oakland Community
      • Two phases: 1 transition and 2 ongoing maintenance
      • Fund the project directly through the school
      • Formal project based accounting methodologies
      • Oversight and audit by external organization
      • Detailed project management with monthly budget status
  • 9. Project Risks
    • Get the faculty excited and then fail to deliver on the promise, contributing to poor morale
    • Funding the transition project while not funding the follow-on support to maintain and tune the new facilities
    • Fail to secure the new equipment leading to theft and loss of time, money and value
  • 10. Next Steps
    • General agreement from funders that the project has merit
    • Establish Piedmont School IT Steering Committee
    • Develop funding sources and a funding strategy
    • Secure funding
    • Assign a Project Leader at Piedmont School
    • Build IT Strategy, project plan, resource plan and detailed budget
    • Get the plan approved and funded
    • Secure vendors and service providers
    • Assign a team to lead the project
    • Celebrate the accomplishment
    • Transition to ongoing maintenance and tuning
    • Close the loop on value realized
    Current Focus
  • 11. Our Approach
    • Identify motivated change agents within organizations
    • Simplify complex problems to make them easier to solve
    • Help people drive change one project at a time
    • Emphasize coaching over doing
    • Use the following approach
      • Define change motivations
      • Resource plan (people & money)
      • Leadership team for change
      • Detail plan + budget
      • Audit team
      • Go or No-Go
      • Coach the implementation team
      • Continuous improvement plan
      • Value realization
    • Identify future change opportunities
  • 12. Lessons Learned Do’s Don’ts 1. 1. 2. 2.
  • 13. Status Updates
    • 10/14/2009
      • Zarina has appointed a point person to coordinate the Computer Lab, which gives the project a single point of contact for coordination, project management and knowledge transfer – I assume that this person would act as the project manager
      • Zarina has established a formal relationship with the non-profit organization “Oakland Small Schools Foundation” to facilitate donations
      • The new point person has begun to visit other schools and to learn from them what works and what doesn’t – this is an invaluable step in the process
      • We met with Brian Rogers from the Rogers Family Foundation to discuss options and approaches
      • We continue to develop the justification and to explore funding options in parallel