Help Desk

Lodi USD Implements Remote Support for Schools

Lodi Unified School District (Lodi USD) in California has implemented a remote support system to help its service desk staff respond to requests from teachers in 48 schools across 350 square miles.

The district has eight service desk staff members serving 30,000 students and 3,000 teachers and staff using a wide variety of devices, including Mac and PC computers, iPads, interactive whiteboards, document cameras, projectors and printers, as well as email and multiple software packages for operational tasks and classroom curriculum. The district's previous help desk system was confusing for people because it required many steps to use, creating a barrier to troubleshooting.

Dale Munsch, the director of technology services for the district, and his staff turned to the Web to find a replacement support system with a more intuitive user interface. The search lead them to Bomgar Remote Support, which is a centralized system for supporting a wide variety of devices, from servers to smartphones, both on and off the district's network, according to information on the company's site.

"We felt it was an easy tool to use for our support team, and was much easier for our end users as well," said Munsch in a prepared statement. "The most significant features were the ability to escalate our support agents' rights to install software or change settings without logging out, cross platform support, the ability to bring in second tier support and allow them to see the screen and take control during a session and, finally, the ability to record the session so we could use it for training.”

The system is in compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) because it uses a secure connection that doesn't route support sessions through a third-party server, so it doesn't put sensitive student data at risk.

The district anticipates that the new remote support system will make it easier for help desk staff to respond to classroom technology issues quickly. In the future, the district plans to expand its use of the Bomgar Chat tool, so teachers will be able to ask questions and get quick responses from support staff.

About the Author

Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at leilameyer@gmail.com.

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