Using Technology to Keep Up with the Pace of Growth – and Student Demand
Olentangy Local Schools, located in a rural suburb of Columbus, Ohio, is the fastest growing district in Ohio so it’s not surprising they’ve turned to technology to help them deal with the rapid growth. Schoology, an online learning management and social learning tool, in particular is making a big impact on the district.
Most of the students in the district’s eight middle and high schools, as well as many students in the elementary schools, are now using Schoology. However, at the start of the 2011-12 school year, before Schoology was adopted by the district, the name Schoology was unfamiliar to Director of Technology, Keith Pomeroy. “Three weeks into the school year one of our high school’s journalism students came to interview me. Before we started, she thanked me for implementing Schoology. I had to ask her what Schoology was”.
Keith had been searching for a platform to facilitate the delivery of online courses for the district’s new Olentangy Teaching Academy (O2A) that was launched in the summer of 2011. After hearing from the student how she and her classmates were using Schoology, it seemed like a good option for O2A, so Keith started to investigate. He was immediately drawn to Schoology because of how simple it is to use. “One look at it and I thought it was fantastic. I immediately knew how to use it because it’s so much like the social media programs teachers and students are using outside of the classroom.”
Incredible Flexibility and Responsiveness Tip the Scale in Favor of Schoology
Keith and his colleagues investigated several other learning management and social learning tools but knew Schoology was the right solution for them after meeting with the Schoology development team. Schoology’s capabilities were robust at the time, but when Keith asked about capabilities Schoology didn’t currently offer, the development team responded with suggestions, ideas and enthusiasm for enhancing the existing platform to meet the district’s needs. Keith was especially impressed with Schoology’s built-in feedback mechanism. Any Schoology user can make a suggestion as they’re using the program and Schoology responds – frequently by quickly developing the features that are requested.
While Keith was evaluating Schoology and other solutions, student use of Schoology grew from 500 to 1,600 students. “Our students had spoken. This was the platform they wanted to use. I was impressed with Schoology but student adoption made it an easy decision to move forward. I have never seen any product be adopted as quickly as Schoology.”
Read the rest at schoology.com.