At first, when Indian Prairie School District began to feel the pinch of rising demands on its help desk support, it wasn’t sure how it would meet the growth in requests.
It’s a big district in suburban Chicago, with about 28,000 students across 33 schools. Given expanding IT needs in classrooms, IPSD decided to launch a program that would tap students as support aides, says Stan Gorbatkin, assistant superintendent for technology services.
The district just completed its first year of using students in tech squads at the middle school level. Instead of setting up a traditional help desk in each school’s media room as many student-run programs do, IPSD embedded its 200 volunteers strategically in classrooms, Gorbatkin says. When students experience Wi-Fi or login issues or need help with educational apps or websites, volunteers are there to handle needs on the spot, he says.
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