Learning and Classroom Management in the Digital Age
Left Picture: History Teacher Mr. Desrosiers; Right Picture Mrs. Estrada's 6th period US History.
SAN ELIZARIO, TEXAS – The San Elizario Independent School District (SEISD) began using Net Ref in the Fall of 2022. Net Ref provides classroom teachers the freedom to teach in the digital age. Net Ref is a tool that assists teachers with classroom management while students are on their devices.
The SEISD is now a one-to-one district, which means every student has their own instructional device. To assist teachers with managing what students accessed while on their devices, the SEISD Instructional Technology team sought to identify how to help teachers monitor and control what students were accessing while students were receiving and completing instruction. The Net Ref tool allowed teachers to simultaneously view all student screens and watch what they are accessing and if students are staying on track.
Conversations about implementing Net Ref have started since the 2020-2021 school year and solidified in August 2022. The project began by presenting and introducing the product, vetted and approved by the district Cabinet Team. Once approved, it was time to demonstrate the product to leadership, teachers, and parents and get feedback before purchasing. Afterward, it was time to roster Net Ref with the teacher and student information and deploy the Net Ref application to Windows and Chromebooks. Next, the plan proceeded with preparing manuals and professional development. And finally, start testing it in small controlled groups and mass deployment district-wide. Net Ref is currently monitoring 2,775 devices that include laptops, Chromebooks, and computer labs between five campuses.
Teachers use Net Ref to support a student-centered approach. The Net Ref is a tool to help students stay focused and engaged in their learning. As more and more teachers experience the helpfulness of Net Ref, students will be the beneficiaries of it. Modern students want to find agency in their learning, but teachers sometimes fear this because they will have to let students roam the internet to find their answers. With Net Ref, teachers will feel at ease knowing they can guide the students and focus on meaningful learning. Net Ref is an excellent tool for the modern classroom. Net Ref is a tool that brings out the best in teachers and students. A modern tool for a modern educational world.
For Lori Estrada, a San Elizario High School Social Studies Teacher, "Net Ref is a great tool to keep students on task and engaged in the lessons presented in class. In addition, Estrada states, "I can use it to manage which websites students’ access; I feel that when I look at data now, I have a much more realistic picture."