Iowa District Adopts Web-based Collaboration Service

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Montezuma Community Schools in Iowa has adopted a SaaS-based approach to online collaboration. The small district, with three schools and fewer than 500 students, recently implemented technology from School Web Lockers to handle a variety of online needs, including file sharing and other collaborative tasks, as well as storage.

"We really needed something that would offer our faculty and students an opportunity to work more efficiently from home and to be able to transport that work back to school," said Keith Sietstra, a teacher and assistant technology coordinator for the district, in a statement released this week. "Being a smaller school district, we also needed an alternative that would help us use our budget wisely. School Web Lockers has definitely met that need."

School Web Lockers provides schools with secure file sharing, message boards, teacher blogs, and other capabilities via a software as a service (SaaS) platform. Students, teachers, and staff receive individual Web lockers for storage and can access their lockers from school or home. Lockers start at about $1 per student, and storage is unlimited.

"For us, it basically came down to two alternatives, either buy an entirely new server altogether to help meet storage demands, or purchase a thumb drive for every student in grades K-12 and try to police what is brought in and taken out on them," Sietstra said.

The technology also includes integrated security features. Beyond password protection for individual lockers, it also offers file type filtering, profanity filtering (for message boards), virus scanning, logins for parents, and monitoring of what is being stored by students on the system.

Montezuma Community Schools is the first district in Iowa to adopt School Web Lockers technology, according to the company.

About the Author

Executive Producer David Nagel heads up the editorial department for 1105 Media's education publications — which include two daily sites, a variety of newsletters and two monthly digital magazines covering technology in both K-12 and higher education.

A 21-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art and business publications.

He can be reached at dnagel@1105media.com. You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/profile/view?id=10390192 or follow him on Twitter at @THEJournalDave (K-12) or @CampusTechDave (higher education). A selection of David Nagel's articles can be found on this site.


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