TechPilot Improves Efficiency & Lessens Load on IT and Enhances Classroom Management
With an IT staff of only two people, Wesley Fryer, director of technology for Casady School in Oklahoma City, wanted to find an MDM that minimized IT involvement and incorporated more customized classroom management options for teachers. The school had been using Meraki to manage their devices, but Fryer was struggling and frustrated by the glitches in pushing out apps to the school’s iPads and the time spent managing devices. It was time-consuming, wasn’t as seamless a process as promised, and he didn’t want to try to retrofit enterprise software to the unique needs of his school. When he searched for a better option, Fryer found TechPilot. He appreciated that TechPilot was designed specifically for education, minimized IT involvement through program efficiencies, and allowed teachers to effectively manage the devices in their own classrooms with minimal IT support. In addition, it was only one third the price of Meraki.
Casady School is an independent preK-12 college prep school whose technology program is unique in a time when most schools are moving to a 1:1 environment. The school’s administrators believe they can accomplish their educational goals through a shared-use mobile environment. The academic program emphasizes the development of creative and critical thinking skills, the ability to plan, evaluate and implement actions, and most importantly, to support and nurture students’ passions. The purpose of technology in this environment is to augment the curriculum, to support academic skill development, and to foster inquiry and collaboration.
The ability to support the school’s mission and pedagogical strategies is one of the reasons Casady has turned to TechPilot. Fryer says, “I can’t overemphasize how important it is that TechPilot is specifically designed for the classroom. I don’t want to go back to enterprise software, especially because of our shared use environment. TechPilot does the job more efficiently and cost-effectively.”
REAL WORLD LESSONS
Because TechPilot gives teachers so much more control of their devices than they had before, Casady School has been able to expand their creativity with lessons. Fryer explained how the school-specific nature of TechPilot recently helped a French teacher pull together a spur-of-the-moment international lesson with students in Africa. The teacher was able to quickly gather the right number of iPads and in just 15 minutes, he was able to install the appropriate apps, customize the students’ iPad screens, and successfully hold the lesson without help from the IT department. Fryer said this is a testament to how powerful and easy it is to use TechPilot. “With our old Meraki software,” he said, “I would not have been able to handle this task by myself in the allotted amount of time. We just did not have this kind of functionality with Meraki.”
TechPilot’s flexibility supports inquiry-based learning so students and teachers can customize their resources or divert to a new line of inquiry almost on the fly, even if they need to identify and download new apps to do so. Their ability to handle this function on their own is freeing for teachers and critical on a large campus where there are only two IT professionals.
TechPilot also made it easier to manage Casady School’s Macs and Apple TVs. “The simplicity of managing the devices and our ability to quickly deploy apps for specific groups of devices is a game changer,” said Fryer. “It’s wonderful to not have to touch each laptop. We’ll be able manage them with TechPilot.”
"The more we can do things within a single pane of glass is good for us. With TechPilot, we can easily manage inventory, updates, and more."
- Wesley Fryer