Technology 4 Learning logo

Technology 4 Learning

Technology 4 Learning

Telephone1300 32 32 32

Issue 94 - Term 1 Week 6

Issue 94 - 2023 | Term 1 | Week 6

Image showing yes or no checkboxes

Newly updated advice on third-party applications and parental consent is now available. Learn what information you need to give parents to satisfy legal and privacy requirements for gaining informed parental consent. You’ll find clear guidance on when schools need parental consent for a student to use an online application and an updated parental consent form template.  There’s also information on the applications that we’ve been assessing on your behalf, and details of what data they collect, where it is stored and who they share it with.  You’ll be able to copy and paste this information into the consent form. For simplicity, we’ve split applications into three categories:

  • Department core applications – no consent required
  • Department approved applications – no consent required
  • All others – consent required

Core applications are MS Office 365 (including Minecraft Education Edition), Google Workspace, Adobe Creative Cloud and Zoom.  Approved applications are those you’ll find on the Online Learning Tools Marketplace and Administration Marketplace Panel for School. We encourage schools to choose from the department approved applications wherever possible, as they have undergone an assessment to ensure they meet syllabus, pedagogy, and data and cyber security requirements. This will ensure schools are using products that are safe and fit for purpose. Is there an application you'd like to see a appear on the marketplace? Email and they will advise the vendor about the process.

With all schools running NAPLAN online assessments this term, we want to ensure a smooth experience for students. It's important to confirm that all devices to be used for testing, meet the technical requirements provided by ACARA. To help with this, the T4L team has prepared important advice around each of the four supported platforms: Windows, Mac, iPad and Chromebooks. Some devices in schools may still be unused since the school holidays. Please take the time to ensure every device is ready to work. Most of your compatible managed devices should have been automatically installed with the latest version of the locked down browser. But some devices may require local deployment. To be doubly sure, each device intended for use should be checked and confirmed first by trying a demonstration test well before the actual test.

Following a massive effort from schools and through automatic in-place upgrades since September last year, the count of Windows 10 v20H2 devices remaining on the department's network is now below 17,000 and represents less than 4% of all managed Windows devices in use. The time has come to make a final push and find any remaining 20H2 devices and F12 rebuild them to our latest Windows version, 21H2. Microsoft will end support for 20H2 on 9 May 2023. To maintain security of the department's infrastructure, it is critical that we remove all unsupported devices as soon as possible. Devices still running 20H2 are easily identifiable via UDM by sorting the OS column. If your school still has any of these older builds, please rebuild them as a priority. Upgraded devices will have the latest Office 365 suite of desktop applications included.

All users of Google Drive should always carefully consider the options available when sharing files and folders in Google Drive. Currently, these three options are available:

  • Restricted - users or groups to be granted sharing access must be individually named
  • NSW Dept of Education - this is ALL school and corporate staff AND students in NSW. The sharing link is required to gain access.
  • Anyone with the link - this is Public - eg. school community. The sharing link is required.

The middle option is often misunderstood. In many situations, schools were using this option, intending to share content only with other staff or students at their own school.  When sharing files to students or staff at your school, to maintain privacy and security, you should always choose the Restricted option and then either name individuals distinctly, or use the available Google security groups, via the use of Autofill. Just start typing and matching names automatically appear. School-based groups are available for students (scholastic years and roll classes), teachers and non-teachers in all schools. Type your school code, then the desired year to see the different groups!  So convenient.

Did you know there are over 82,000 registered staff on our Yammer service now? They are discussing and sharing knowledge and ideas - and all of them are your peers! So many vibrant tech communities, making a difference every day. Just click the Join button at the top-right of each of these and enjoy. Yammer is an amazing place.

A teacher education student starting at her first school

An important aspect of any placement is providing the pre-service teacher with access to the school's network. It's important that schools and the pre-service teacher complete the onboarding process correctly. Please pass this onto supervising teachers who support these pre-service teachers.

  1. The applicant must complete the Tertiary Practicum Student Application Form. The verification process may take more than 10 days
  2. If successfully verified by Probity, an account with access to essential services is created automatically, with the applicant advised.
  3. The applicant must have their details confirmed and their WWCC verified within eCPC.
  4. Once activated, the school uses AMU/Manage My Staff to provide access to local resources and have them fully productive from their first day!

A fantastic new feature is now part of your calendar in Outlook webmail. A new option on that screen to Create a bookings page allows you to build your own online appointments book, where people that want to meet with you can book an in-person or an online meeting, in your specified available timeslots. Online meetings are assigned a Teams meeting room automatically. All booked appointments automatically appear in your calendar and you can choose to accept them or suggest an alternative timeslot. Watch this quick video below to see how it works, and how you might use it.

If you've ever needed to quickly put together an org chart or a flowchart, or maybe a block or network diagram, then it's likely that you're aware of MS Visio. It's a separately licenced desktop app for Windows, but did you know that as part of our Microsoft 365, we have access to Visio Web for all staff and students right now? While it doesn't have the full feature set of the desktop app, for basic diagramming, it's very handy. Being part of Office 365, Visio Web is also collaborative! Multiple users can join in the creation of your diagrams at the same time and you can also access Visio in MS Teams. 

Apple recently changed the way they provide AppleCare to the department and NSW public schools. Apple MacBook and iMac, as well as iPads provided through the Rural Access Gap Program, and the NSW DoE check-in kiosk, are covered by AppleCare. This means that if they have a fault or are damaged, you could be entitled to a replacement or an onsite repair. This is an additional service over and above the standard Apple warranty.  iPads received through the T4L rollout, or purchased through EdBuy are covered by the standard consumer warranty only. Check if your Apple device is covered, and for all warranty repairs, log any Apple issue with AppleCare via EdConnect. Call 1300 32 32 32 then press 5 to be connected directly to Apple Care. When prompted for a PIN, enter 3232. Finally, the T4L team wants to know how we can help you more with Apple. This quick 2 minute survey will help us with our planning for 2023! 

More and more schools that use DoE-enrolled Chromebooks are taking on local management using Google Delegated Admin. This is an important reminder that all Chromebooks that are newly enrolled into the DoE Google domain are automatically placed into the school container of the STAFF MEMBER that is enrolling the device. The following advice is VERY important. ANY staff member in NSW DoE can enrol a Chromebook purchased through EdBuy or received via T4L rollout. But if that staff member is associated with multiple schools, the Chromebook will be added to the container of THEIR primary site. This may or may not be the school that the Chromebook is intended for. It is always best to ensure that the staff member that is authenticating to enrol the Chromebook, is someone substantively associated with the school that owns the Chromebook. More details in this Yammer post.

Installing Acrobat DC

When you first F12-build a Windows device, Acrobat Reader is included with the build. It allows users to open, view and print PDF files and even fill in PDF forms. But many staff users in particular need the ability to edit PDF files and create their own forms or portfolios. In order to do this, the Adobe Acrobat DC package needs to be installed on the computer. For school-owned computers, this can only be installed as a push-request from UDM by the school's ICT Coordinator or TSO.  As one of the most-commonly deployed programs, Acrobat DC can also be one of the more frustrating to deploy. Many schools have used UDM to deploy it, only to find it installs on some devices but not on others, even after waiting days.  All UDM deployments are completely silent and run in the background, even while a user is logged on. There are no prompts for the user and there is no indication of success, apart from the desired program suddenly appearing on the target devices, ready for use. But because it is silent, there is also no notification of a failed installation. So it's important to understand what could cause a failed install. Acrobat DC wants to install plugins, so it will fail if any of the following are open and in use:

  • Any Microsoft Office program (eg. Word, Powerpoint, Excel)
  • Any Internet browser (eg. Chrome, Edge, FIrefox)

Once the install has failed, it may or may not retry the install at a later time, and this is dependent on the reason it failed. If Acrobat DC is not there within two days, it's safe to assume it failed. UDM installs are usually successful when the device is turned on, but not logged on. Or, logged on, but not being used, with Office and browsers closed. For this reason, it's best to negotiate when to deploy it with each user.

Following on from the Acrobat DC article above, what happens if you F12-rebuild a computer that already had Acrobat DC installed? Will it install automatically with the rebuild? The correct answer is: "it depends". As long as the version of Acrobat DC that was previously installed on the device being rebuilt, is the same version as is currently in UDM, then yes, Acrobat DC will automatically install following the rebuild. This requirement also applies to any other package that was associated with the device. However, if the version of Acrobat DC in UDM is newer than the one that was installed, then it will not be installed, and the school's ICT Coordinator or TSO will need to redeploy the newer package from UDM. Then of course, the advice provided in the previous article needs to be taken into consideration.

The T4L team has run many live online professional learning sessions over the past two years, covering all kinds of technology used in the classroom. But did you know that we recorded most of them? If you missed any of the T4L Webinars or virtual sessions, you can always join in at your own pace and in your own time. Just visit our T4L Learning On Demand webpage that lists our past professional learning events. All of our recordings are organised by subject and are easy to access. In addition, our upcoming PL Events page tells you all about the free sessions you can register for and attend live online. Everyone that registers also receives the session recording links after each event. Remember to also share these links with other staff at your school, and check in regularly for new additions!

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?