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A teacher’s guide to getting IT Admins excited about COOL

5 February 2021

A quick Google search offers many tips on how to encourage teachers to use educational technology in their classrooms. But what if it’s you, the teacher, who’s doing the persuading? Our 3-step guide will help you explain the why and how of setting up the COOL Platform for your school. Before you know it, you’ll have your IT admin (and the rest of the team) on your side.

You’ve already found out about our COOL Platform and classroom management tools. Now you need your IT administrator or network manager to set up COOL for your school. But your visionary enthusiasm is running up against a wall of doubts, objections and reluctance… Is that about right? Then let us help you out! If you’re passionate about using digital tools in your classroom, follow our 3-step guide to get your IT administrator as excited about COOL as you are. 

 

1. Explain why your IT admin should set up COOL


IT admins have many reasons for not wanting to invest in a “new thing”. They’re set in their ways, don’t have the time or just see no reason to install something they don’t know. Instead of telling your IT admin to install COOL for you, show them the benefits. Give them insight into the why and how. Discuss your school’s digital security together. Put your case for COOL in terms the admin cares about, which should be learning, teaching, IT security and their own daily work:

  • Investing in COOL means investing in the kids. Show your IT admin how COOL can produce real positive results, for example by supporting individual learning styles. Talk about how engaging modules such as Skilltree and the Portfolio app allow students to take ownership of their learning, demonstrate independence, and follow their interests. Top it off with how using COOL in the classroom will equip students with the 21st-century learning skills they need to become digitally literate citizens.
  • COOL supports the team. Explain why COOL is a great solution, for example by making teachers’ lives easier and saving time for all parties involved. Share how much teaching time you’re losing due to complicated login procedures or when trying to control a classroom full of students and devices. Next, show your admin how Monitoring can help you keep your classroom in check and track individual progress, without students getting distracted by you walking around.
  • COOL frees up the IT admin for meaningful work. Here, the magic words are automation, simplification and self-service. Tedious manual tasks like creating new accounts, resetting passwords or adding new applications will be part of your admin’s past. COOL automatically creates up-to-date user accounts and groups based on Google Classroom, and enables teachers to perform simple tasks like changing student passwords themselves. With the COOL app library, teachers can finally add educational apps and web pages for their students without the help of an admin.
  • COOL simplifies the school’s IT infrastructure by bringing everything under one umbrella. All settings are grouped together in one admin dashboard and the IT admin only has to configure these settings once. When your COOL Platform is set up correctly, it will work forever! Full integration with G Suite for Education means your IT admin can easily add or remove users, manage devices, and configure security settings to keep all student and staff data safe.
  • Finally, let your IT admin know that you need and appreciate their expertise. It’s them who need to set things up securely for your school. This is done in the Google Admin Console: a special environment for administrators. Should your school not yet be using G Suite, there lies another task for the IT admin – with which we are happy to help.

 


Necessity & Value

Q: What is COOL’s added value? Is it not just another extension?

A: COOL is used by almost 2000 schools worldwide. It’s stable and makes blended learning and distance learning easy, fun and accessible! For example, with modules like Picture login and Exam mode, which make it easy for even your youngest students to log in and take simple tests. COOL opens up new ways to stimulate and personalize learning, differentiate instruction, and track progress by combining the best educational tools in one solution.


 
 

2. Explain what needs to be done

 
What does your IT admin need to do exactly to install COOL? We’ve broken the process down in 3 simple steps:

  1. Import user accounts. COOL automatically reads and imports student, teacher and staff accounts from your Google environment. If the admin adds or removes users in G Suite or Classroom at a later time, these will also automatically be added or deleted within COOL. It’s simple: anything that happens in G Suite, also happens in COOL!
  2. Manage how users log in. The Google Admin is also automatically the main COOL administrator. Simply put, that means they are in charge of who can do what. For example, whether users log in with their Google account, with Picture login or by scanning their personal QR code. Putting basic settings like these in the hands of the IT admin ensures that your school can set up secure login procedures.
  3. Install COOL modules. Setting up Monitoring, Exam Mode and Plagiarism check happen within the Google Admin console. This must be done once. The admin can set up COOL modules for the entire school, selected groups or specific users.

 


Time management I

Q: How am I supposed to find the time to set up and manage COOL?

A: IT admins often assume that setting up and managing COOL takes a lot of time. Truth is, the setup process is simple and the IT admin only needs to go through it once. Plus, COOL saves them loads of time once it’s up and running! Simple tasks such as changing student passwords can be done directly by the teacher. By assigning teachers or school managers as co-COOL admins, they can even manage apps and add new users for the entire school. Teachers no longer need to bother the IT admin with minor requests, leaving both of them more time for important tasks. That’s a win-win situation right there!


 
 

3. Focus on what’s important: IT security


Now that your IT admin knows what needs to be done and why, this is the moment to dispel any remaining doubts and fears, for example about security and privacy. Keeping malware, cyber-attacks and other digital threats out of the school is of paramount importance to your admin. At Cloudwise, we share this concern for the safe use of technology. When it comes to the security of our platform, we always go the extra mile (or two)! 

  • Cyber security. One way to ensure the safety of our platform is by regularly assigning professional ethical hackers – so-called “whiteheads” – to attempt to hack COOL on behalf of Cloudwise. They try to get into the system and report to us if and where they managed to access data. In the first test, COOL scored a 98.5 on a scale of 100!
  • Data protection. As Europe’s leading Google for Education partner, our platform benefits from every effort Google makes to protect and secure your data. Student and school data is kept secure and compliant, and IT administrators can easily monitor and control access from a central management console.
  • Highest standards. COOL is GDPR compliant, ISO-9001 and ISO-27001 certified and is developed in the Netherlands, in line with strict European standards. We make sure all our products are compatible with the German market, which has the highest data protection standards in the world. Google complies with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), and ISO/IEC 27018:2019.

 


Time management II

Q: If COOL saves me so much time, what will I be doing?

A: Some IT admins fear they may become obsolete once the COOL Platform is in place. But simplifying and streamlining the school’s IT operations with COOL doesn’t mean there won’t be enough work for them. It’ll just be more interesting! A day in the life of a COOL admin involves many different things, like keeping track of how teachers use the Monitoring module, managing with whom students and staff can share different types of files, optimizing the server, and lifting and shifting applications to the cloud – to name just a few.


 
 

To sum up…

  • COOL empowers easy and safe IT management.
  • COOL is a stable solution with a large user base around the world.
  • Everyone benefits from COOL: students, the teaching team and the IT admin!

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