Our member districts consist of the 22 public school districts located in Montgomery County. Each member district contributes to a core membership fund to support the essential leadership functions of the Office of Technology Services. Many of these services are also offered as a fee-based service to non-member schools and organizations.

Each year, the membership services are reviewed and updated to better meet district needs. As a result, all infrastructure including PAIUnet and the regional wide area network became a membership service. This change allows us to build and maintain our infrastructure to support all of our service offerings. Many of these services are also offered as a fee-based service to non-member schools and organizations. This year we have added BrightBytes Clarity Pro to our member benefits.

 

Advisory Council Coordination

The Office of Technology Services hosts onsite meetings for county technology directors for the purpose of providing a communication link between the districts, MCIU, and state. In addition, we provide special events and activities on specialized products or topics.

 

BrightBytes Clarity

The BrightBytes Clarity platform translates complex analyses and cutting-edge research into fast ACTIONS that improve student learning. BrightBytes Clarity Pro delivers tools and services that measure the impact of technology use on learning. Clarity delivers an individual technology report for each school, a detailed dashboard of disaggregated data, a customized list of school solutions, and much more! This analysis follows the CASE® system, which includes:

  • Classroom: time on tasks with technology in the classroom
  • Access: access to technology at school and at home
  • Skills: teacher/student skills with technology
  • Environment: factors that support/hinder technology use

Consortium Purchase Coordination

MCIU is constantly looking for ways to offer joint purchasing opportunities to our local school entities. Through these efforts, school districts will be able to benefit from cost savings. We will coordinate county-wide offers from technology vendors to leverage purchasing power. These include hardware, software, and services. Current consortium pricing is available for PowerSchool, Schoology, Canvas, CloudLock, Lenovo computers, and many more.

Consultation and Leadership

Through the district core contributions, MCIU provides ongoing consultation and leadership in the area of technology. Our staff can assist with the technology planning process and may serve on planning committees at district’s request. The director and other technology administrators are readily available to support local school district initiatives, as needed.

County Speaker’s Bureau

MCIU maintains a list of expert speakers available to present on a variety of technology-related topics. We can help you identify the perfect presenter and topic for your event and can facilitate pricing negotiations. Presenters range from the local to national level.

Desktop Video Software

Each district receives 10 concurrent software licenses for desktop videoconferencing software that can be installed on every computer in the district. The software can be used for videoconference meetings, online learning, and statewide events.

Educational Technology Resources

MCIU has various educational technology resources available for our local school districts. In addition to researching and evaluating the newest educational technology resources, we develop new applications designed to meet the needs of our districts.

eRate (Consortium Applications and Consulting)

eRate is a federal program that discounts telecommunications and Internet services for schools and libraries. TIS provides eRate services for all consortium and grant applications. Once the eRate application is approved, reimbursements are distributed back to your district. Applications are submitted for Internet, RWAN, and PAIUnet services.

Grant Writing for Technology Needs

MCIU will spearhead efforts to obtain technology grants that meet the needs of our school districts and the mission of the MCIU. Consortium grant applications that benefit the county are included in membership services.

Moodle Hosting & Support

Making an online learning environment available to students and teachers is one of the single most valuable investments you can make toward meeting your school’s 21st century learning initiatives. Investing in Moodle helps teachers grade quicker and easier, reduces classroom printing/copying costs, and provides a safe and controlled environment for students to collaborate with each other online. The shared Moodle hosting provided with your core membership is an excellent opportunity to expose your teachers and students to these benefits.MCIU offers a diverse array of Moodle trainings. Whether you’re a beginner looking to set up a simple classroom homepage, or an advanced user looking to create a collaborative and immersive learning experience, we can offer training that will further your Moodle skills. These trainings are offered regularly, and we are happy to come out and work with your teachers on site as well. See Technology Trainings or our current course catalog for more details. For a greater level of service and for non-Montgomery County districts, please see our fee-based Moodle options.

PAIUnet Membership

Every district in Montgomery County is connected to the PAIUnet statewide network. As a result, voice, video, and data services can be shared securely over this private network with any school or IU in Pennsylvania.

RWAN Connectivity

Every district in Montgomery County is connected to the Regional Wide Area Network by a fiber backbone. This network allows high-speed access to voice, video, and data services that can be shared between districts.

Technology Planning

All districts must submit a technology plan to the Pennsylvania Department of Education. MCIU can assist your district with the eStrategic Planning tool and the technology planning process. Our staff is also available to serve on planning committees.

User Group Coordination

Special interest support groups are established for sharing and problem-solving. Meetings may take place in person or virtually. PowerSchool, Moodle, and Lync user groups are offered regularly. Please contact us if you are interested in developing a technology-related user group.

Vendor Workshops

Through partnerships with technology vendors, MCIU offers seminars and workshops on a variety of topics. Vendors participate in council meetings only at the specific request of the group.

Video Conferencing Coordination

Basic videoconferencing support is provided to local districts. This includes connection testing and gatekeeper services via our Polycom CMA. Expanded services are available in the fee-based section.