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Chromebook Program Handbook

Lighthouse for Learning 1:1 Chromebook Program

Our vision is to develop an educational technology program that is innovative, rigorous, and engaging at all levels.  Students will use their Chromebooks in practical ways to develop their communication and collaboration with others, utilize problem solving skills, improve creativity, and increase critical thinking. Students will become effective, self-directed learners who feel a sense of ownership for their learning, and for their own computer!  

Our students already excel in the classroom.  We have seen our teachers use the technology they already have in innovative and impactful ways.  By placing these 21st century learning tools in the hands of our students, the district will support and encourage a cloud-based instructional approach to further this vision.  Our “lighthouse” will be a clear and present beacon, pointing the way for students to advance themselves and to locate pathways which lead to success.

How can this handbook help you?

The purpose of this Chromebook Policy Handbook is to provide parents and students with a thorough explanation of how the district will manage the Lighthouse 1:1 initiative. It further outlines the procedures and policies for families to protect the Chromebook investment for the East Greenbush Central School District (EGCSD).

The success of this initiative will be strongly tied to the responsibility, ownership, and pride that our students have when they receive their Chromebooks. While the district believes that technology use is critical to student success and needs to be part of the daily learning process, the ability to have a device at all times is considered a privilege that our students should not take lightly.

Table of Contents

  1. Receiving Your Chromebook
  2. Chromebook Distribution
  3. Returning Your Chromebook
  4. Taking Care of Your Chromebook
  5. Using Your Chromebook at School
  6. At Home Use
  7. Managing Your Files and Saving Your Digital Work
  8. Supporting Your Chromebook
  9. Protecting & Storing Your Chromebook
  10. Repairing/Replacing Your Chromebook
  11. Chromebook Technical Support
  12. Expectation of Privacy
  13. Responsible Digital Use and Awareness

1. Receiving Your Chromebook

Chromebooks will be distributed to students and families in grades 6-12 at a series of special kickoff events in August.  (The dates and times of these events will be sent in advance.) One event for each grade level will be held.Receiving Your Chromebook

Chromebooks will be collected at the end of each school year and students will retain their original Chromebooks each year.   The district provided sleeve will not be collected and is the responsibility of the student to retain over the summer.

All students in grades 6-12 are expected to use a district-issued Chromebook during the school day.

2. Chromebook Distribution

  • In August of 2018, students in grades 6-12 will receive their Chromebooks during a series of kickoff meetings.  
  • Students in grades 6-12 will also receive a carry-case sleeve from the district to be used to protect the Chromebook during transport.  The sleeves are expected to last for the entire life of the Chromebook, and are expected to be used every day. Students are expected to keep the sleeves clean and presentable.
  • Students in grades 3-5 will use their Chromebook in school only.
    • Each teacher will be responsible for the distribution of the classroom devices during the school day.  
    • The EGCSD Student Agreement For Computer Network Use (Form 4526.1-E.2) must be signed by the student and parents if they have not done so already.

3. Returning Your Chromebook

Chromebooks and their originally-supplied chargers will be returned during the final week of school so they can be inventoried, receive maintenance, and be stored for the summer months. The Chromebook sleeve is to be kept at home over the summer and returned for use when school begins.   Staff will complete a Student Computer Loan Agreement when the Chromebook is issued.  Individual school Chromebooks and chargers must be returned to the district at the end of each school year. A student whose enrollment is withdrawn or terminated for any reason must return her/his individual school Chromebook at that time. If a student fails to return the Chromebook at the end of the school year or upon termination of enrollment the student will be responsible for the replacement cost of the Chromebook and its accessories. Failure to return the Chromebook or provide the replacement cost will result in a theft report being filed with the proper authorities. If the Chromebook or any accessories are returned in a damaged or otherwise unsatisfactory condition, a fee, as set forth in section 10d,  will be assessed to cover their repair or replacement.

4. Taking Care of Your Chromebook

Students are responsible for the general care of the Chromebooks they have been issued.

Elementary Schools
Elementary school Chromebooks that are broken or fail to work properly must be reported to the district Technology Department by your child’s teacher as soon as possible so that they can be taken care of properly.

Goff Middle School and Columbia High School
Middle school and high school Chromebooks that are broken or fail to work properly must be brought to the Main Office for the Technology Department to pick up. The Main Office will contact the technician on duty and a loaner device will be issued.  When repairs are complete on the student’s device, the student will be contacted by the Main Office to retrieve it.

District-owned Chromebooks are NOT to be taken to an outside computer service for any type of repairs or maintenance.

4a. General Precautions

  • Take care to protect your password. Do not share your password.
  • No food or drink is allowed next to your Chromebook while it is in use.
  • Cords, cables, and removable storage devices must be inserted carefully into the Chromebook.  Never use force to insert a device into the USB port, in order to avoid damaging the port. If the device does not slide in easily, ask an adult for assistance.
  • Never transport your Chromebook with the charger plugged in.  Never store your Chromebook in its sleeve or your backpack while the charger is plugged in.
  • Students should never carry their Chromebooks while the screen is open.
  • Chromebooks must remain free of any writing, drawing, or stickers that are not the district-approved.
  • Heavy objects should never be placed on top of your Chromebook.
  • Chromebooks must have an East Greenbush asset tag on them at all times, and this tag must not be removed or altered in any way.  If the tag is intentionally removed disciplinary action could result.
  • Chromebooks should never be left in an unlocked car or locker, or in any unsupervised area.
  • Students are responsible for bringing completely charged Chromebooks to school every day.
  • If your Chromebook is in need of repair, please bring it to the Main Office (Goff Middle School or Columbia High School) as soon as possible.  For elementary schools, please let your teacher know about the issue.
  • When charging the Chromebook, avoid stressing the power port on it by keeping the charger at the same height as the Chromebook.
  • Be aware that the Chromebooks are consumer electronic devices and as such there may be the occasional malfunction.  Take care to notice any sign of overheating, or bulging of batteries. If this should happen, remove power from the device at once and discontinue use of the device.  

4b. Carrying Chromebooks

The guidelines below should always be followed when moving your Chromebook:

  • Transport Chromebooks with care.
  • Never move a Chromebook by lifting from the screen. Always support a Chromebook from the bottom with the lid closed. Chromebook lids should always be closed and tightly secured when moving.
  • When carrying the Chromebook in another case/backpack, use caution when placing it among other items (notebooks, books, lunch box, etc.) to avoid putting too much pressure and weight on the screen, which can crack easily.
  • Use caution when placing Chromebooks into bags to ensure that writing utensils, earbuds, etc. do not slip between the screen and keyboard.

4c. Screen Care

The Chromebook screens can be easily damaged! The screens are particularly sensitive to damage from excessive pressure.

  • Do not lean or put pressure on the top of the Chromebook when it is closed.
  • Do not store the Chromebook with the screen in the open position.
  • Do not place anything near the Chromebook that could put pressure on the screen.
  • Do not place anything in the sleeve, another carrying case, or backpack that will press against the cover.
  • Do not poke the screen with anything that will mark or scratch the surface.
  • Do not place anything (e.g., pens, pencils, or disks) on the keyboard before closing the lid.
  • Do not put anything (e.g. pens, pencils, etc.) in the openings for a device or power.
  • Clean the screen with a soft, dry microfiber or anti-static cloth which can be found in stores such as Walmart, Target, Staples, or online via Amazon.

4d. Protective Sleeve

It is required that students use the protective sleeve provided by the district for their Chromebooks. While sleeves will not protect from all types of damage, they can still provide suitable protection during transport.

5. Using Your Chromebook at School

  • Chromebooks are intended for use at school every day. The district regards a Chromebook device as a learning tool, very similar to a textbook.
  • In addition to teacher expectations for Chromebook use, additional information such as school messages, announcements, calendars and schedules may also be accessed.
  • Students must bring their Chromebooks to all classes, unless specifically advised not to do so by a teacher.
  • Chromebooks should be locked in lockers when not in use.

5a. Chromebooks left at home

  • If a Chromebook is left at home, the student will have the opportunity to use a loaner Chromebook from the Main Office if one is available. The loaner Chromebook must be returned before leaving school at the end of the day.
  • Repeat violations of this policy may result in disciplinary action.

5b. Chromebooks under repair

  • Loaner Chromebooks may be issued to students when they leave their Chromebook for repair at the Main Office.

5c. Charging your Chromebook

  • It is the responsibility of all students to charge their Chromebooks each evening and to bring them to school each day fully charged.
  • Repeat violations of this policy may result in disciplinary action.
  • There are a limited number of charging areas available to students on a first-come, first-served basis. Columbia High School and Goff Middle School will each have a minimum of 15 multi-bay charging stations distributed throughout the building.  

5d. Backgrounds

  • Inappropriate media may not be used as a screensaver or background.
  • The presence of guns, weapons, pornographic materials, inappropriate language, or alcohol-, drug-, or gang-related symbols or pictures will result in disciplinary action.

5e. Sound, Music, Games, Apps, USB-based devices

  • Sound must be muted at all times unless permission is obtained from the teacher.
  • Headphones may be used at the discretion of the teacher.
  • All apps/music/games must be district-approved and/or educationally appropriate.
  • No app may be installed and no USB-based device may be used with EGCSD Chromebooks without prior permission from the Director of Technology.
  • At no time will it be acceptable for students to modify the configuration of the Chromebook device, or to attempt to use a device to disable any features of the chromebook.  
  • At no time will it be acceptable for students to attempt to bypass the district’s filtering equipment or software.  These actions will be considered to be in violation of the Code of Conduct and may result in disciplinary action.

5f. Printing

  • Digital sharing of documents is encouraged; printing is discouraged.
  • Students may use network printers during class or breaks, with the teacher’s permission.

6. At Home Use

  • The use of Chromebooks at home is encouraged for students in grades 6-12.
  • Chromebook care at home is as important as it is in school. Please refer to Section 4, “Taking Care of Your Chromebook.”
  • It is required that you transport your Chromebook in the provided sleeve.
  • Students are allowed to connect to a wireless network when using their Chromebook away from school. Student use of the Chromebook will be subject to the EGCSD website filtering software even when accessing materials on a home connection.
  • A WiFi Internet connection is often required for Chromebook use. However, there are many applications that can be used while the device is not connected to the Internet, including Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, and others.

7. Managing Your Files and Saving Your Digital Work

  • The majority of student work will be stored in Internet cloud-based applications, making it accessible from any computer with an Internet connection and most mobile Internet devices.
  • Some files may be stored on the Chromebook’s internal hard drive.
  • Students should always remember to save frequently when working on their Chromebook’s internal hard drive.  This drive should be used for temporary storage only, and files stored there should be moved to your Google Drive storage as soon as possible.
  • The district will not be responsible for the loss of any student work.
  • Files should be stored permanently in your cloud-based Google Drive and not in the downloads file folder or any other folder located on the Chromebook’s internal hard drive.  Students should be aware that from time to time the internal hard drive of the Chromebook will be erased without notice.

8. Supporting Your Chromebook

Proper care and maintenance of your Chromebook will help keep the device in good working condition over the years it is in use.

8a. Updating your Chromebook

  • When a Chromebook starts up, it updates itself automatically so your device has the most recent version of the Chrome operating system without you having to do a thing.  There is no need for time-consuming installations, updates, or re-imaging.

8b. Procedures for Restoring your Chromebook

  • If your Chromebook needs technical support for the operating system, all support will be handled by EGCSD employees or other parties at the discretion of the Director of Technology.
  • The school does not accept responsibility for the loss of any software or documents deleted during reformatting or re-imaging, or due to technical issues or issues resulting from inappropriate use.

8c. Apps and Extensions

  • Searching for and applying most apps/extensions from the Chrome Web Store has been disabled for all students. Some mandatory apps/extension will be automatically added. Other apps/extensions that appear in an EGCSD recommended Apps tab in the Chrome Web Store are available for individual students to add.
  • Students may request educational/instructional applications through an online request form that their teacher will fill out.  The Director of Technology will determine educational value before allowing access.
  • Some web apps will be available to use when the Chromebook is not connected to the Internet, including Google Drive apps (Docs, Sheets, Slides, etc.)

9. Protecting & Storing Your Chromebook

9a. Chromebook Identification

  • Student Chromebooks will be labeled in the manner specified by the school. Chromebooks can be identified in several ways:
    • District asset tag
    • Serial number
    • School-generated barcode
  • Chromebooks are the responsibility of the students.  This device is for your use for three years. Take good care of it!

9b. Account Security

  • Students are required to use their EGCSD.org domain user ID and password to protect their accounts and are required to keep that password confidential.
  • EGCSD authorizes only you to use the Chromebook, and only for instructional purposes. No other individuals are permitted to use the device.  Please be advised that all Chromebook use is filtered and monitored for the safety of our students.

9c. Storing Your Chromebook

  • When students are not using their Chromebooks, they should store them in their locked locker.
  • Nothing should be placed on top of the Chromebook when stored in the locker.
  • Students in grades 6-12 are encouraged to take their Chromebooks home everyday after school, regardless of whether or not they are needed.
  • Chromebooks should not be stored in a student’s vehicle, whether at school or at home, both for security and temperature control measures.

9d. Chromebooks Left in Unsupervised Areas

  • Under no circumstances should Chromebooks be left in an unsupervised area.
  • Unsupervised areas include the school grounds and campus, cafeterias, computer labs, gymnasiums, locker rooms, media centers, unlocked classrooms, and hallways. Any Chromebook left in these areas is in danger of being stolen.
  • If an unsupervised Chromebook is found, please notify a staff member immediately.
  • Unsupervised Chromebooks will be confiscated by staff. Disciplinary action may be taken for leaving a Chromebook in an unsupervised location.

10. Repairing/Replacing Your Chromebook

10a. Vendor Warranty:

  • The equipment vendor provides a one-year hardware warranty on new Chromebooks.
  • The vendor warranties the Chromebooks from defects in materials and workmanship.
  • This limited warranty covers normal use, mechanical breakdown or faulty construction and will provide for the repair or replacement of a problematic Chromebook.
  • The vendor does not warranty against damage caused by misuse, abuse, accidents or viruses.
  • Please report all Chromebook problems to your Guideroom teacher.

10b. Optional Chromebook Maintenance Program

  • The devices will be maintained by the East Greenbush Technology Department staff or some other party, at the discretion of the Director of Technology.
  • There is a one time Maintenance Program Enrollment Fee  (cost is $26) The fee is payable through the MySchoolBucks website. The maintenance program allows for a maximum of two (2) repairs to the device over its usage life at NO CHARGE. Usage life is 3 school years.
  • At the end of 3 school years, a new device may be issued, and a new fee will be assessed at that time.
  • The student must be enrolled in the Chromebook Maintenance Program no later than October 1, 2018.
  • For repairs beyond the maximum of two (2), there will be an “Incident Fee” based on a sliding scale charged for each repair that is determined to have resulted from an accident. The fee will be invoiced to the family using the MySchoolBucks website. This fee is assessed to not only encourage proper use, but also to help offset repair costs.
  • If the Chromebook is damaged, lost, or stolen, the resulting costs and procedures will be as follows:
    • Software issues = No cost. (One reason Chromebooks were selected is the limited number of software issues that can affect them.)   
    • Accidental damage (e.g., water spills, missing keys, or cracked cases) requiring repair = NO CHARGE for the first incident; NO CHARGE for the second incident; $75 for the third incident; $100 for the fourth incident and each incident thereafter.
    • Accidental damage to screen = NO CHARGE  for the first incident; NO CHARGE for the second incident; $75 for the third incident; $100 for the fourth incident and each incident thereafter.
    • If a student Chromebook requires more than two (2) repairs in one (1) school year due to accidental damage, the student may lose the privilege of bringing the device home and/or face disciplinary action.
    • If Chromebook damage is beyond repair whether accidental or non-accidental, the student will be responsible for the replacement value as described in Section 10d.

10c. Repairs When the Family Elects to Not Use the Chromebook Maintenance Program

  • The devices will be maintained by the East Greenbush Technology Department staff or some other party, at the discretion of the Director of Technology.
  • There will be a sliding scale “Incident Fee” charged for every accidental hardware repair needed.  The “Incident Fee” will be invoiced to the family using the MySchoolBucks website. This fee is assessed to not only encourage proper use, but also to help offset repair costs.
  • If the Chromebook is damaged, lost, or stolen, the resulting costs and procedures will be as follows:
    • Software issues = No cost. (One reason Chromebooks were selected is the limited number of software issues that can affect them.)
    • Accidental damage (e.g., water spills, missing keys, or cracked cases) requiring repair = $30 for the first incident; $50 for the second incident; $75 for the third incident; $100 for the fourth incident and each incident thereafter.
    • Accidental damage to screen = $30 for the first incident; $50 for the second incident; $75 for the third incident; $100 for the fourth incident and each incident thereafter.
    • If a student Chromebook requires more than two (2) repairs in one (1) school year due to accidental damage, the student may lose the privilege of bringing the device home and/or face disciplinary action.
    • If Chromebook damage is beyond repair whether accidental or non-accidental,  the student will be responsible for the replacement value as described in Section 10d.

10d. Lost or Stolen Chromebook and Accessories

  • Chromebooks and accessories that are lost or stolen are the responsibility of the student.
  • Lost or stolen Chromebooks must be reported to the building principal within 24 hours of the incident.
  • The student must pay the associated charges to replace a lost or stolen Chromebook and accessories:
    • Chromebook: $190
    • Charger: $25
    • Sleeve $20

   NOTE: This policy is identical to that of the replacement of lost or stolen textbooks.

11. Chromebook Technical Support

Technical support will be available through the normal technical support process in each building.

Services provided will include the following:

  • Hardware maintenance and repairs.
  • User account support.
  • Coordination and completion of warranty repairs.
  • Distribution of loaner Chromebooks.

ALL REPAIRS must be completed by the EGCSD Technology Department staff, or designee of the Director of Technology.

12. Expectation of Privacy

No right of privacy exists in the use of technology resources provided by the school district. School system administrators or individuals designated by the superintendent may review files and Internet history logs, monitor communications and content, and intercept email messages, so as to maintain system integrity and to ensure compliance with school board policy and applicable laws and regulations. School system personnel shall monitor online activities of individuals who access the Internet while logged into a district provided student Google login.  This will be the case whether the individual is using a district provided computer or any other computer. The District reserves the right to access the devices while at school to ensure proper compliance with District policy.

13. Responsible Digital Use and Awareness

District­-issued Chromebooks and other devices should be used for educational purposes, and students are to adhere at all times to district Acceptable Use Policy 4526, Internet Safety Policy 4526.1, and all corresponding administrative procedures. While working in a digital and collaborative environment, students should always conduct themselves as responsible digital citizens.

View Lighthouse 1:1 Chromebook Program Handbook (PDF)