Technology

Technology Mission Statement
 

The Catholic Schools Office of the Diocese of Charleston recognizes the new challenges that confront us as we share the gospel in a rapidly changing technological age.  We pledge, along with our students, to acquire the necessary skills to face these new challenges with strong spiritual values and appropriate technical knowledge.  Technology is not seen as an "end," but as a means through which thinking skills and academic knowledge are acquired.  The Catholic Schools of the Diocese of Charleston are committed to preparing their students to succeed in a global technological society.

Teachers at St. Joseph Catholic School are engaged in technology resources that enhance instructional strategies to support multiple learning styles and to promote cooperative learning.  SJCS uses Google Apps for Education which offers free unlimited storage and easy collaboration within a user-friendly domain.

  •        Students utilize technology to access and analyze information using a variety of devices such as PC in computer lab, IPads, laptops, and chromebooks.
     
  •      Handheld electronic devices such as iPads are used in our elementary  grades (Pre-Kindergarten to 4th Grade). iPads offer a wide-range of education apps for these grade levels. Students’ previous experiences and prior exposure to this device will help to focus on academic skills rather than technology skills.
     
  •        Students in our upper elementary and middle school use portable processing devices such as laptops and Chromebooks.  These devices provide for word processing needs and research capabilities for the students.  The ease of use, configuration, and management are a benefit.
  •        Specialized Labs complement all student devices for specific software needs that cannot be supported on handheld devices.

Recommended Elementary and Middle School Student Use Devices          

Student Grade Level
PreK-2

3-4
5-6
7-8

School Wide

Baseline Recommendation 
Cart based or Centers-based handheld devices.
1 iPad per student for Centers
  Cart based handheld devices, 1 iPad per student, 1 laptop per student
Available handheld devices or alternative laptops, 1 per student
Chromebooks 1 per student

PC or Mac Computer Lab
 

Intellectual Security

St. Joseph Catholic School accepts its responsibility to provide a physically safe and comfortable environment for its students.  It also accepts its responsibility to provide and foster an intellectually stable and secure environment.  A significant aspect of the curriculum requires Internet access. 

The school utilizes a software product called ChurchDNS (Domain Named Servers) which stands guard between a student’s computing device and the Internet.  This product protects our school network through the filtering of inappropriate websites, malware services, phishing sites, and greatly reduces most web-based advertisements.  ALL internet access requests from ANY device on the school network must successfully pass the filtering algorithms before internet access is provided.  This process greatly reduces the possibility of reaching an inappropriate website.

Why Chromebooks?

The 7th and 8th grade students of St. Joseph Catholic School use Chromebooks as part of their daily academic program.  You can think of a Chromebook as an Internet-dependent laptop that starts up super-fast (roughly 7-8 seconds, or a fraction of the time it takes to boot an older model Windows-based laptop or desktop).

When you turn on the Chromebook you’ll notice the only native application is the Google Chrome Internet browser. And that, briefly, is the essence of a Chromebook! Everything else is composed of Web applications (email, photos, documents), or apps that run while you’re connected to a network. Google also includes a limited amount of cloud storage for every Chromebook.

The obvious benefits of everything being saved on the Web is that the students have access to it from any computer. Plus, if your Chromebook ever dies, you won’t have to worry about restoring your OS (Operating System), losing all your applications, documents, and settings.

Now for the important part – The Chrome OS negates most traditional entry points for malware and viruses. You can’t install traditional programs at all; the browser and individual pages run locked inside safe areas of memory, and at each reboot, a Chromebook verifies that its software hasn’t been tampered with and repairs it if necessary. The Chrome OS also downloads and installs its own security updates automatically. And since it stores your data online, even setting a Chromebook on fire should not jeopardize your information and data.

All these features don’t reduce the on-line risk of Chromebook use to zero, but the Chrome OS is significantly safer from malware and virus infections and results in less risk from a web attack than Microsoft’s Windows or Apple’s iOS.