Technology 4 Learning logo

Technology 4 Learning

Technology 4 Learning

Telephone1300 32 32 32

Issue 86 - Term 2 Week 9

Issue 86 - 2022 | Term 2 | Week 9

Bins full of eWaste

Many schools have been confused about the eWaste collection service offerings available and as a result, storerooms have been filled with older, out-dated computer equipment that is no longer fit for their needs. So to help clear the confusion, the T4L team contacted each of our contracted vendors of standard computer devices, to get clear details of how their free collection service works. What they will and won't collect and how to access the service, regardless of where you are located in NSW. Each of the four vendor's offerings is different, so it's important to clearly understand what their service covers. Remember, since 2015, every Acer, Apple, Dell and HP device purchased via EdBuy or through T4L or RAG rollouts, includes a "takeback" component in the purchase price. So take a look at what you have that needs to be disposed of through an eWaste service and then compare the offerings of each vendor with this handy two-page PDF document. Of course, these are not the only eWaste options available to schools. Every Officeworks store and many local councils offer a free drop-off service. Also remember that Battery World freely accepts the drop-off of any kinds of loose batteries. Finally, one school's eWaste could be another school's eTreasure - particularly if it still works! Why not post details on Yammer's Used Technology Wanted and Available community?

Schools and corporate offices that rely on Zoom to host their online meetings and webinars will be pleased to hear that the department's Zoom service has been extended. All staff can host large online meetings with up to 500 participants. The Zoom Webinar service for all NSW DoE staff has also been renewed with a maximum of 500 attendees. In case you're not aware of the difference: 

  • A Zoom meeting allows all participants to enable their cameras and mics and join in actively. All users must have a Zoom account (freely available)
  • A Zoom webinar allows you to set a limited number of hosts or panelists, while all other attendees view passively with text chat and Q&A options. Attendees can join using their browser and don't need a Zoom account.

If you need to cater for more than 500 attendees, there are other live streaming options for consideration. 

The Windows 10 v21H2 in-place upgrade option for remaining v1909 devices was enabled on 31 May. All eligible devices that have not yet been upgraded and have sufficient storage space available, will see the upgrade deployed progressively over the next two weeks. When we first announced the need to upgrade v1909 installations in October last year, there were over 100,000 devices running it.  It's fantastic to see that many schools jumped right in and F12-rebuilt so many of those devices. Together with the in-place upgrades that are now happening, we've seen some amazing results:

  • v1909 devices on the network - 37,500
  • v21H2 devices on the network - 63,700

There are still around 80 schools in NSW with at least 100 of these out of support operating systems on the network. The main focus should be to find and rebuild those as soon as possible. Progress will be centrally monitored and the local ICT field services teams will assist where needed.

Whenever you need support for a computer, peripheral or software issue, the more information you can provide with your logged ticket, the quicker the issue can be diagnosed and resolved.

  • What were you trying to do?
  • What exactly happened when you did it?
  • What exact error messages appeared?
  • What have you tried to do to fix it?

All of that info is great input for the troubleshooting process by the first level team at EDConnect and the ICT Field Services team who are all trying to solve your issue as soon as possible. Often, one of the best ways to share exactly what happened is to take screenshots or photos of your computer screen, to clearly capture what's on the screen as the issue appeared. If logging a ticket online, you can attach JPGs, or if on the phone, tell them you have photos that might help.

Keeping safe on social media is our theme for Social Media Day 2022. Information collected by the eSafety Commissioner and Microsoft in 2021, shows that 12-17 year-olds spend an average of 14.4 hours on YouTube, Snapchat or Instagram and the use of TikTok had increased by 26% over three years! 51% of us reported being exposed to an online risk. Australia performed well across most categories - except Cyberbullying. It’s a concern that 44% of young people experienced negativity online last year and 30% were contacted by people they do not know. But it is encouraging to note that 40% want their schools to provide them with advice and support, to help build their skills in this area. The department’s Keep safe on social media web page is focused on helping with building resilience and capacity. We have collated resources for primary and high school students, as well as for parents and carers – feel free to use any of these resources in your school newsletter.

Microsoft Outlook logo

If you have a smartphone or tablet, or maybe your own Windows computer or Mac and you use the built-in mail app to access your work email, things are about to change. Some of these mail apps use "basic authentication" to access your work email account and allow you to send, receive and display your mailbox. Microsoft will end access to their mail services via basic authentication at the start of October. To prepare for this, the department is shifting its options for email access on personal devices to "modern authentication" only, using our Single Sign-On services.

During the upcoming July school holidays, all staff email accounts will have this change applied. Any devices that are currently using the Microsoft Outlook app should see no change. However, other mail client apps may stop accessing your mailbox and you'll be unable to receive or send new emails. Providing your mail app is compatible with modern authentication, you can remove your work email account from your mail app and then re-add it, choosing the Office 365 or Exchange option, then authenticate as normal via SSO.  If your mail app does not support modern authentication, you will need to consider using an alternative mail app. The department's recommendation is to always use the Microsoft Outlook app, which is available for free on all device platforms.

As a friendly reminder, all NSW department staff must complete Cyber Security NSW Essentials training (45 minutes). In this course you’ll learn about – avoiding social engineering, managing email, text message and voice call scams, setting strong passwords, protecting your devices when working at home or in a public area, backing-up your important documents and safely disposing of old devices. In addition, Staff with admin access to IT systems in schools and corporate areas must also complete Cyber Security NSW Essentials Plus training (20 mins). In this course, you'll learn about – responsibilities and top tips for privileged users, types of cyber security attacks and what to look out for, operational security and common threats with case studies, password security and why to use a password manager, the dark web, IoT, Bluetooth and QR code security. Cyber security is everyone's responsibility, and this training is mandatory for everyone – please ensure you complete your training by 30 June.

It's taken a while with global supply chain issues, but all vendors involved in the 2021-22 T4L Rollout have now completed deliveries of all outstanding devices! If your school still has any questions about your order, please send details to our mailbox. Hopefully all schools have completed the first time setup of each device, or are planning to do that shortly. To help you with what's required to set up each device, here are some links:

One of the most common questions the T4L team gets is, "I've got a home computer. What can I use for free through the department?".  There is plenty, and much of it is not only for staff, but for students as well! As more online services are attached to the department's single sign-on service, it means that they are accessible anywhere, anytime. Just sign into your NSW Education Portal and you'll have the full Office 365 and Google Workspace suites a click away. If you want to install the MS Office desktop apps, just go to the download page. What about the full Adobe Creative Cloud suite? Who can access that at home? All staff and all high school students have full access to install Adobe Creative Cloud apps on their personal Windows or Mac devices. Primary school students can use Adobe Creative Cloud Express as a web application. So what else is available? Well, if you're looking for a simple way to create all kinds of visually-appealing documents, you could always use Canva for Education!  For online meetings, staff have Google Meet, MS Teams and of course, Zoom. There are so many powerful tools, how can you learn them all? Try your free LinkedIn Learning access for easy video tutorials!

The move from primary to secondary school is an exciting, but sometimes challenging period for young learners. Apple’s vision for learning focusses on learning that’s connected, collaborative, creative, and personal for every individual. This helps to support students during these important transitions. Join the Apple Education Team for a special on-line two-part series, where leaders in education explore ideas and share their strategies for engaging and supporting adolescent learners across Junior Secondary programs. Book a free place now for you and other teachers at your school, for these sessions on August 11 and 16 (Term 3). During these one hour sessions you will:

  • Explore the latest research and innovative approaches to student engagement with special guest Professor Donna Pendergast, Dean and Head of School of Education and Professional Studies at Griffith University.
  • Hear from pioneering school leaders and teachers from across Australia, as they share insights and reflections on the role Apple technology has played in their approach to engaging young learners.

Laptop and iPad Trolley

Most schools now have one or more secure carts to help them store, recharge and move their sets of notebooks, Chromebooks or iPads around the school. But remember that these carts are electrical devices! Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions. If not used appropriately, the risks include:

  • Power surges / circuit overload "trips" / damage to computer devices / possible fire.

The more devices that a cart can hold, the more power it will draw when plugged in. ALWAYS plug the cart into a power outlet on the wall and NEVER into a powerboard or extension cord. ▪ The wall power outlet should be residual current device (RCD) protected. ▪ Some schools have reported that the circuit trips when they plug in their cart. It may be necessary to arrange for a new circuit to be installed by an electrician, or move the cart to another room on a different circuit with less load. ▪ The power boards inside the cart each should have their own circuit breaker and these may trip individually, so always check them if some devices aren't charging. ▪ And consider how the device power adapters are organised. Notebook adapters should not be sitting on top of each other. Ensure there is some separation between each to avoid overheating. ▪ Arrange cables as neatly as possible to aid troubleshooting. These tips should ensure electrical safety and hassle-free use of your carts.

Don't you hate it when you go to the notebook trolley or cart to grab a notebook computer and a previous user didn't plug in the charger and now the battery is almost flat?  Or you open the lid and find that the last user didn't logout and now the device is locked for them and you have to go through the "Log on as a different user" process? Or maybe the device hasn't been shut down for so long that Windows updates need to run before the device can be used for real work purposes?  If only students understood that others will want to use the notebook after they've finished with it - maybe they'll be considerate and helpful to others. To help raise awareness about shared notebook courtesy, why not print out this handy A4 poster and stick it to every trolley/cart in a place they are sure to see it?

Schools often have electricians booked in to complete electrical work and sometimes it will involve a power outage. If you know that power will be turned off for the entire school, or for the block that contains the eT4L Server or internet service equipment, it's really important that you log an EDConnect call to advise of the upcoming power shutdown. Servers and their components in particular, are susceptible to damage with sudden power loss. By logging a call with sufficient notice, we can arrange to remotely and gracefully power down your server and other critical network equipment before your power outage. It's best to call EDConnect on 1300 32 32 32 to advise when exactly the power outage will be and request ITD to remotely shut down key infrastructure devices. When power is restored, simply press the power button on the eT4L server to restart it.

Information Technology Directorate publishes three issues of news.T4L each term. Remember - share each issue with your staff! And if you aren't receiving an email notification as soon as a new issue of news.T4L drops, then you're missing out! So why not subscribe?