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Articles: Facilities

BOOKSTORE BROWSING—Nearly 60 of Baltimore County Public Schools’ libraries have reorganized shelves to emulate bookstores, with books grouped by genre rather than the Dewey Decimel System. Students find it easier to help themselves.

School libraries increasingly use “genrefication”—the reorganization of collections by genre as opposed to the traditional Dewey Decimal System—to boost circulation.

What does research reveal about independent reading and overall reading performance?

Barbers Hill ISD is a suburban district along the upper Texas Gulf Coast, and it was one of the first districts in the state with a 1-to-1 Chromebook program.

Following some maintenance and repair issues with students who took their laptops home after school, Barbers Hill decided its 1-to-1 program would continue only in the classroom.

Kim Muldrow, a systems support specialist for Barbers Hill, wanted a solution that differed from laptop carts. That’s when PowerGistics Towers came into the equation during the summer of 2015.

Bay Shore Union Free School District, located on the south shore of Long Island and about 50 miles east of New York City, is a small, diverse district of approximately 6,500 students and 8.9 square miles to cover with school transportation.

Children from 19 El Paso ISD schools now engage in social-emotional activities at nearly two dozen new playgrounds, thanks in part to districtwide communication.

There’s no shortage of programs that can help make your district’s busing routes more efficient.

The best part is that you don’t need a supercomputer to use them.

BusBoss Professional


Link to main story: Schools pursue better directions

Turning right on a red light is part of the driving landscape in all 50 states, but school buses generally wait for green.

Many states prohibit a right turn on red for a school bus, but Florida’s Manatee County just started a pilot program that lets drivers of the district’s 150 buses go right on red, potentially saving 10 to 20 minutes per route.

While this one change might cut valuable minutes off a bus route, in some places it’s not as simple as it sounds.

LEANER & GREENER—An MIT supercomputer remapped bus routes for Boston Public Schools (above). The district trimmed its fleet by 50 vehicles, saved about $4 million and cut carbon dioxide emissions.

The techniques for streamlining bus transportation range from a variety of off-the shelf routing programs to relying more on an administrator’s experience with local conditions.

Source: U.S. Department of Energy / Source: Orlando Utilities Commission

Faced with tight budgets and the expanding use of electricity-hungry technology, districts are turning to energy efficiency solutions that don’t sacrifice learning power.

What issues do your K-12 visitor management system clients want to address?

“Surprisingly, there are more tardies/early dismissals and staff check-ins than visitors in most schools. For example, in 2017, in 4,500 user schools, the Ident-A-Kid system logged an average of 2,020 tardies/early releases and 1,830 staff check-ins per year, per school, and only 960 visitors. Based on the sheer numbers, the impacts to funding and the requirement for accurate tracking, schools and districts are particularly interested in tardy and early dismissal management.”

Today’s more sophisticated visitor management systems allow K12 leaders to get a better handle on who’s trying to enter (or leave) their buildings—including tardy students.

Ken Trump (ken@schoolsecurity.org) is the president of National School Safety and Security Services.

The emotionally charged climates following the tragic attack in Parkland, Florida are understandable, but making knee-jerk decisions with a “do something, do anything, do it now” mantra can lead to high-risk, high-liability actions.

Lausanne Collegiate School in Memphis is an International Baccalaureate school serving students and parents from 54 different countries in pre-K through grade 12. When the school wanted to design a new playground, administrators wanted to demonstrate its global brand and create an area with a world theme reflective of students and their families.

Stewart Crais, Lausanne’s director of operations, says the school also needed a playground that could fit into a confined area at the front of the campus and add to its curb appeal.

CAREER OPPORTUNITIES—The apprenticeship program at Newport News Public Schools in Virginia puts employees on track for raises and promotions. It can also help them enroll in college.

Managing and keeping track of the many hours of professional development required for a district’s non-instructional staff may be one of an administrator’s more underappreciated responsibilities.

How important was collaboration when designing the FirstView® suite of products?

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