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The e-Professional by EGEA
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The e-Professional

Volume 11                                    October 2014                                         

Technology 


In this new digital age, technology (and its frustrations) has become a fact of life. In this edition, we dive into some of the tech challenges facing educators today. This information attempts to provide helpful tips, cautions, and insights into the use and expansion of technology into instructional practices. A special thank you to our members Heather Shannon and Gail Desler in Technology Services, and EGUSD Tech Services Director, Steve Mate, for contributions to this month's e-Professional.

Tech Info, Tips, & Reminders

SISWEB: It is NOT appropriate to look up student information that is not essential to your job duties. Student confidentiality must be maintained. Records are kept of employee searches on SISWEB, so please use discretion when using this tool. Personal student information must be treated with the utmost confidentiality.

EGUSD Wi-Fi: By the end of October, all classrooms should have a wi-fi access point. A staggering 20,000 devices a day attempt to connect with the Guest Wi-Fi network, therefore, it is often slow and may be a source of frustration. Cell phones or other devices will automatically connect (or try to connect) to the EGUSD Guest network when we are on a school campus. We can all help to make the network faster by turning off wi-fi services when not in use, or using the “forget this network” feature on your personal devices.

The other two networks are specifically for Chromebooks and EGUSD devices. These two networks are for business-related work. The guest network may be used for non-work purposes, but it is filtered, and tech services can review the sites you have visited during your session. Any use of district networks or computers can be monitored by the employer. It is NOT private.

Password apps: Always keep your password secure. Use the hardest password you can remember. If you have trouble keeping all your different passwords straight, you might think about using a password app. There are many apps that keep your information private, and backed up securely online, in the event something happens to your device.

The Internet: The internet may often seem slow at your workstation. One cause is due to content filters always working in the background on your school computer. Every time you visit a site, the filters must work decrypting data, both uploading requests and downloading information.


Warning: Social Networking Could Damage or Destroy Your Employment Case!!!


Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are examples of popular social networking sites, but these sites are not just for keeping up with your friends. You may have read about employers using these sites to screen job applicants or check up on their employees. But did you know that information you post could destroy an employment case related to injury, disability, or stress? Posting could potentially put your claim and job in danger.

Social media sites and blogs can help a school district's attorney by providing clues about your activities and lifestyle which the district's attorney may try to take out of context in an attempt to contradict the following:

  • Your doctor's diagnoses
  • Your ability to work
  • Your claim that you are depressed or withdrawn and unable to interact normally with friends or family

You might put pictures, videos, and/or other personal information on your site. Your friends might make funny comments about you. You may even put videos on YouTube. However, when you have an employment case, you have to begin living in a glass house. You need to think about how your pictures and comments might be viewed by a judge or jury. Sometimes, even innocent and seemingly irrelevant things can be twisted to make it look as if you have not been emotionally distressed or that you are lying about your restrictions and limitations.


Even making your pages private may not be enough to stop the employer's attorney. You may inadvertently make a friend or follower of someone the employer or employer's attorney knows. A judge may order you to produce copies of your pages.

But, if you must post on social media, please protect yourself. Here are some suggestions:

 

  1. Do not post anything you wouldn't want the employer, attorney, or judge to read.
  2. Set privacy settings to block anyone you do not know from viewing your personal pages.
  3. Search your name on all of the sites you are a member of and on Google. See what comes up and take action to remove anything which could be detrimental to you.
  4. Do not accept any friend requests or answer any e-mails from people you do not know.
  5. Generally, it is not a good practice to friend current students or their parents.
  6. Do not post comments about your students, parents, school, colleagues, or profession that may be perceived as unprofessional conduct. DO NOT VENT ONLINE!
 
Although these sites are fun and are great ways to keep in touch with family and friends, the employer and employer's attorney will use these against you in so many different ways.
  
THE BOTTOM LINE IS TO USE COMMON SENSE.
                 

Use this LINK for a printable copy of this information.

EGUSD has gone Google!


During the 2013-2014 school year, EGUSD deployed Google Apps for Education (GAFE) for all staff and students. In becoming a GAFE district, we are able to provide teachers, students, and administrators with secure access to Google Drive, a powerful, cloud-based, free suite of programs that includes: Docs, Spreadsheets, Forms, Presentations, and Drawings. GAFE runs on an Internet domain owned by EGUSD and is intended for educational use only.

One of the key features of Google Drive/Docs is the sharing feature. Students can share documents with teachers. Teachers can collaborate on the same document and students can even work on a group document at the same time. 


EGUSD is fortunate to have EGEA Member, Gail Desler, who works in the Tech Services department, as a Google Certified Teacher. She is a great resource for educators, as Google Apps for Education becomes a more prevalent tool for instruction. Tech Services will be hosting trainings that can jump start you with Google Apps. In addition, Gail has put together an online tutorial about Google Drive/Docs to familiarize you with the program basics.

Look for these upcoming Google Trainings presented by Gail Desler. Use THIS LINK to register. (Use your EGUSD e-mail and password to log on.)
  • Intro to Google Drive-Google Docs
  • Getting Googley with Slides
  • TransForm Your Teaching with Google Forms
You can access your EGUSD Google Apps account by going to https://drive.google.com/ and using your EGUSD e-mail and password. Note: Remember to open all Google Drive programs (Docs, Slides, Forms, Sheets, Drawings) with your Chrome browser. If you open them in Internet Explorer, the functionality of these powerful programs will be greatly reduced. Please remember that this account is owned by the district and that it should not be used for personal business.
 
Happy Googling!
"The Educators of the Elk Grove Unified School District."

Weingarten Rights


"Union Employees are entitled to have union representation at meetings with supervisors that are investigatory or that could lead to disciplinary action."

Click HERE for more information regarding your right to representation.

 

FREE NEA Member Life Insurance


NEA members are entitled to $1,000 of free life insurance. Visit their website to name your beneficiary today. You must register first. Use THIS link to sign up. Its free and easy! 
 

Kaiser Wellness


In addition to this informational flyer, you can click on the photo for a link to more information on the Kaiser website regarding Women's Health.

Remember that the Wellness Rebate requirements must be completed each year. For the 2014-2015 Wellness Rebate use this LINK for more information.
 

The Union Code of Conduct

Click the picture for a printable copy.

Ideas, Issues, Concerns, Topics


If you have a suggestion about something you would like to learn more about or something that The e-Professional might cover, please e-mail egeaemily@gmail.com.
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