Technology & Innovation » Technology Department Overview

Technology Department Overview

Don Tufano, Director of Technology & Innovation
Office: 708-447-7007
Technology is an integral component of educating our students in the 21st Century. The goal of the District 96 Technology Department is to create and support technology-rich learning environments for our students and staff. The department is dedicated to supporting the district vision of student learning through the seamless implementation and integration of technology.  The Technology Department's Instructional Technology Team work directly with our staff to assist them with the integration of technology-based curricular resources and tools. 
The District 96 Technology Department plans, implements and maintains the network infrastructure for five schools located in Riverside, Brookfield, and North Riverside. In addition, the department designs professional development and assists teachers with integrating technology tools into the curriculum. 
Network Infrastructure
District 96 has a robust, high-speed fiber, 1GBps wide-area network (WAN) between its four physical buildings and a single high-speed fiber, 1GBps connection out to the Internet.
The vast majority of the district's devices connect to the network wirelessly via a Cisco Meraki Wireless Local-Area Network (802.11ac) that was installed in December of 2016.  
The district is currently in the process of replacing its network switches and will be moving to the Cisco Meraki product line for all its switchgear.  The full replacement process is anticipated to be completed by September 2018. 
Device Infrastructure
The District 96 Technology Department primarily supports three operating system (OS) platforms and three mobile device management (MDM) platforms:
User Type OS Quantity MDM Platform
Staff Apple OSX  260 JAMF
Students (Grades 3-8) Chome OS  1300 Google Management Console
Students (Grades K-2) Apple iOS 580 Cisco Meraki
During the 2014-15 school year, District 96 made the decision to transition its Student 1:1 Program devices to Chromebooks.  The transition process took two full years to complete. In the fall of 2017, all students in grades 5 through 8 had been issued Dell Chromebooks. 
The district employees two computer technicians who are both Apple and Dell Chromebook certified to perform all non-warranty repairs onsite.
Classroom Technologies
District 96 has standardized on a set of audio/visual technologies that are available for teacher use in every classroom.  Most every classroom in the district is equipped with an Epson BrightLink Interactive Projector, Epson Document Camera, ceiling-mounted audio system and an Epson Control Box that provides centralized control of all three of the aforementioned components.
In grades Kindergarten through Second, classrooms are equipped with carts of student iPads.  iPads are distributed to classrooms at a 1:1 ratio.  In grades Third and Fourth, each classroom is equipped with carts of student Chromebooks.   Chromebooks are also distributed at a 1:1 ratio.
Content Filtering & Data Security
District 96 maintains its Children's Internet Protect Act (CIPA) compliance by providing premise-based and off-site content filtering. While staff and student devices are on-site, the district's Cisco Meraki Firewall provides content filtering services.  All student-issued Chromebooks and protected off-site via Securly content filtering services. 
The district utilizes Sophos Anti-Virus to protect its devices against viruses and malware.  This year the district also successfully implemented a cybersecurity awareness campaign via KnowBe4 services to better educate staff on how to protect their devices, district data and personal data from e-mail based phishing attacks.
As a direct result of the training and awareness campaign that began in the fall of 2017, the district has seen its vulnerability level decrease from its fall baseline percentage of 15.9% to 4.9%, well below the current industry standard: