Lease Renewal and the Wireless Writing Program ~ A3

*** Ack! Disaster, well not totally… my servers logic board went down today… I’ve had to repost at http://www.eagle.prn.bc.ca/eportfolio/?p=48

My original should be back up and running tomorrow evening (Thursday) with all my original Executive Summary and Analysis

***

I’ve posted my executive summary and analysis along with several different video formats and sizes at

http://www.prn.bc.ca/wwp/

I’ve taken the opportunity this assignment and the course has provided to double dip and build resources for my work. This is an intrapreneurial venture pitch that focuses on the continuation of our 1:1 wireless writing project. I would greatly appreciate comments and suggestions as I will be presenting this to the Board in the winter or early spring of 2009.

Thanks all!

Jarrod

16 comments


1 David De Pieri { 11.26.08 at 12:38 pm }

Hi Jarrod,

Yes, a long download time, like you stated, 81.8 meg = approx 8 minutes on my machine but, well worth the wait, I made some tea in the meantime…

I reviewed Large Pitch – great intro, love the jazzy piano tune… and kept it going in the back ground, clear voice, love the elevator ride and spin-o-rama while inside. That introduction set me up for the “elevator pitch” to follow. You had us for a 30 seconds intro but the “few minute presentation” is actually 12… maybe mention your name again at very beginning of intro while piano is still playing.

Very effective introduction including Sharon Drowski # 60 SD – Great idea introducing the 20 year veteran – adds credence to your pitch, would have been nice to interview her for a few short seconds – a name to a face.

The history explanation is good. You intro the project again, “student writing” improvement, attitude toward learning, communication is more effective, and thinking outside the box. Powerful pitch with ALL subject areas using lap tops… not just a small core of students.
Continued focus – need for structure and focus a the elementary and junior level. I know that from 1st hand experience with my own kids. You mention, improved writing skills and use a graph to support (Orange is good), positive attitude and self-awareness and growth. Supportive parents and a PAC committee is important and need them on board. I would have liked to see the girls rating on the chart, you say the gap has disappeared, why? Shouldn’t the girls bar graph rating have gone up too? Good explanation of lap tops at home and the necessity of. Is enrollment growing because of oil and gas… what happens with a down-turn in economy? You make a good pitch for the remote rural site argument and replacing the 13 year i Mac’s with G4s is a great idea.

I appreciate the way you lay the dollar amount on the table, it is clear and concise. $1,550 per lap over 4 years not bad and with a buy back of only $1 laptop is not bad… is it worth continuing the lease? Only if you agree to another lease agreement with Apple, correct?

There is a catch however, non-renewal of license means district is on the hook for 4 year old lap tops. Right now, the warranty coverage takes care of that. Something administration and the techies need to be aware of when considering lease agreements with computer manufacturers…
It would be nice to have an explanation why the white MacBooks in June 2009 are going to be less in dollar amount than the G4’s iBooks. 30% less I believe you stated, why so much?

At 7:14 minutes, you mention “how can we do all the things we mentioned before in the elevator, without spending anymore money?” You are spending more by re-newing a lease. I find that a little confusing.

All in all, a very effective pitch Jarrod, a little long however. I found myself asking, “didn’t I hear that already…” perhaps it was the way you did the summation toward the end. You did cover a lot of material and this presentation is appropriate for lease extension consideration.

Is there a mention of insurance for the machines… apparently, no school has appropriate insurance for the reason of very high premiums… who is on the hook if one is stolen or dropped.

Information provided at your web site, “Recent Post” is informative and up to date and relevant. The site is well laid out.

In my opinion… funding should be granted for an extension of lease. Obviously, you have passion for this and it shows in the presentation. I came from a rural district and Yes, we had much less than the city schools. I would also like to see the lower elementary levels have quality equipment for their classrooms, this is a good transitional manoeuver.

Well done…

ddp


2 Sarah Wood { 11.26.08 at 3:13 pm }

Jarrod,

I thought you did a fantastic job with both the pitch format and content. In terms of format, I appreciated how you gave some options and tips which made for easy viewing. You have a sense of humour and are very dedicated and this showed throughout the entire spiel.

Wow – I didn’t know it would be so expensive to run this kind of program. What I was wondering (and I have a feeling that your board will wonder as well) is if there is other possibilities of ways this money could be spent? Perhaps this is not your job, but someone else’s to pitch the board with their great idea! Just a thought. That being said, you did a thorough job of explaining the success that this program has encountered already. Aboriginal scores, gender gap scores and FSA scores are huge markers of success and it is amazing to see the results that your program has accomplished in such a short time.

Another topic you touched upon is the target market. I appreciated how you talked about the benefits to all the user groups (teachers, students, parents, etc.). I agree that providing access to a computer will be hugely beneficial to a lower-income family as well. Is there a “slush-fund” to help families who can not afford the lease fee?

I did have trouble following your talk about the money. Perhaps it was because I didn’t know the background. So for the board, I may suggest that you streamline and clarify the different options more succinctly.

Overall, I loved your presentation. I highly recommend your pitch and would provide funding. Good luck with the board!

Sarah


3 Carolann Fraenkel { 11.26.08 at 6:13 pm }

Jarrod,

I can’t get access to the site. I get an error saying it appears to be a valid link but cannot connect.

ca


4 Jarrod Bell { 11.26.08 at 6:47 pm }

Hi the server went down today of course and I have to wait for tomorrow for a part from Dell… I’m moving it tonight to another server… will post

JB


5 Jarrod Bell { 11.26.08 at 7:36 pm }

Hi David, “how can we do all the things we mentioned before in the elevator, without spending anymore money?” is a reference to the fact that if we get a new lease we will essentially spend the same amount of money as we already did, but all the spin offs result because we have the old laptops and can redeploy to other places. The spin offs will not cost any additional dollars. So all the board needs to do is approve the same line item cost. Thank you for your thoughts they will come in handy!

JB


6 Jarrod Bell { 11.26.08 at 7:57 pm }

On the question of reduced costs, the laptops have come down in price quite a bit since the G4s we originally bought were about 1st or 2nd generation. The macbooks we are looking to buy are around fourth generation and end of product line since Apple has unveiled their new aluminum macbooks at a higher cost. Apple shared that they expect the cost to be about 30% less than our original G4 laptops due to this.


7 Carolann Fraenkel { 11.26.08 at 8:55 pm }

Hi Jarrod,

Thanks for re-posting this, and I hope your logic board arrives. (bummer)

I really liked the elevator pitch at the beginning, and actually would have liked to see you go back into the elevator at the end and do your ending bit, it would have provided a nice closure. Also (here is the musician in me) the music at the start and the end should be closer to the same, either same instrument or same melody so there is continuity.

The presentation was well done, you packed a lot of information in there. There were a couple of places where I got lost.

The first was where you were introducing the writing project. The presentation was good, and the numbers were convincing (I won’t repeat what David wrote above regarding girls, but I was thinking the same thing) I would have liked to have a two sentence explanation of what the wireless writing project is and does. Maybe a few bullet points, just in case there are people who don’t know much about it (new to the district or ?)

The next place you lost me was where you were talking about the 30% savings. (The humor about apple wanting you to buy more laptops was a great touch.) The financial information was confusing to me. I’m kind of a visual/linear person so I would have liked to see some kind of comparison that showed the current amount spent and what you get and what you get with the same spending.

I’m sure if I went back and looked at it again I could piece it together, but I’m lazy 🙂

You should get funding. I would love to know more about the writing project, and leasing laptops. (maybe when your server gets fixed)

carolann


8 David Wees { 11.27.08 at 1:54 am }

Assessing the Need

You’ve done an excellent job outlining the need for this program.

Well-defined Target

Your target audience is unclear, but is presumably someone who holds the purse strings for your school district.

Management

Your management team is clearly spelled out, although individuals involved (except yourself) are not named. More information about other people involved in this project might help it grow.

Creativity

Your idea is a good one and is a creative way of adding more laptops to your district.

Feasibility

Since you are simply asking for existing funding to continue, the feasibility of your project seems high.

Planning

You’ve obviously done a lot of planning and this comes out in your pitch. It is clear that should you receive the funding you require, every penny of it will be utilized.

Operations

You’ve mentioned some day to day uses of the laptops, and who would be specifically in charge of implementing the program.

Sustainability

Your project requires that the district continue to have the laptop program in their budget every year. Should a funding shortfall hit the district, unfortunately it seems likely that your program will be cut or reduced. Purchasing additional laptop batteries might be a good idea, in the event that your 4 year old G4 laptops become 13 year G4 laptops still in use.

Social Impact

You’ve presented some clear data on the increased performance by your students so your program seems like it is a huge success. The social impact of higher writing scores means that people end up better educated when they graduate from high school.

Presentation

Your presentation was engaging, interesting to watch, and highly effective at communicating your ideas. Excellent work!

Comments
You mentioned something about taking resumes for your district? What types of positions are available? The things going on your district seem really exciting to me and I think I’d be willing to brave the cold, cold winters for a few years to participate! You have sold me on both your lease renewal and your school district with 1 video! Seriously though, a video of this sort should be played at recruitment fairs held annually at UBC, SFU and Victoria each May and June to try and bring new teachers up your way.


9 Jarrod Bell { 11.27.08 at 9:57 pm }

Thanks David, I’m very proud of our district and the people that we work with. We know that being rural and northern means that we won’t keep everyone but they’ll be much better off for joining us for a couple of years. Because of that there are regularly a variety of jobs available in most areas. Many of our senior admin are nearing retirement so there is a lot of leadership opportunities as well (I’m 31). We will be using some parts of my videos for our recruiting campaigns that travel the country in January.


10 Susan Wilson { 11.29.08 at 1:59 pm }

Hi, Jarod

I found your presentation to include a comprehensive, well-thought out pitch that seemed to make complete sense. I cannot really think of any information that is lacking in your proposal. The only question that I have, and it is not really related to your pitch, is why the inequity? Why do rural schools and the two remote schools not have the same level of technology as the rest in your division?


11 Jarrod Bell { 11.29.08 at 3:22 pm }

They do have similar levels of technology other than their satellite internet, however they do not have their own libraries and often feel a little left out even with the efforts to include them. I think this could be beneficial to them if we could put in a laptop for every child. The 6, 7, and grade 8 students get laptops but why not enough in the building for everyone? That’s my thinking there… We might be able to better support some of the grade 4/5/6/7/8 splits….


12 Melissa Anders { 11.29.08 at 6:09 pm }

Hi Jarrod,

I’m in!

You answered all my questions before I could even ask them in your presentation. It was well thought out and informative. As an EVA, your passion for the product made me passionate for the program and made me want to help keep it going. I don’t want all those teachers, students and parents to be disappointed.

I found the first few slides to be a little hard to follow as I wanted to listed to you as well as read what was written and there was quite a bit of information.

Other than that, great job!

I hope you get the funding to continue this clearly successful program.

Melissa


13 Jagpal Uppal { 11.30.08 at 10:27 am }

Hi Jarrod,

I think you have a winning idea here. At our highschool, our leadership has decided that purchasing laptops and incorporating them into existing classrooms (ie. Science has a moblie cart, so does Socials, and English) is more beneficial to long-term learning than simply investing in a traditional computer lab.

One challenge that we are facing is that no one teacher takes ownership of the mobile cart, and as a result frequent vandalism and damage is occurring. Our Tech Facilitator who’s job is to fix the mobile laptops has become very frustrated. I like your idea of supplying one laptop per child as this will increase the accountability of the computer not being damaged.

Although the video took a long time to load….it was definately worth it! I liked the elevator, music, and mix between pictures, video and text.

Great work & Good luck with your proposal!

Jag


14 fetya { 11.30.08 at 6:17 pm }

Hi Jarrod,

the executive summary is very well detailed and I appreciate the WWP link for more information.

The pitch itself is original and very well presented. Everything is well laid-out and you come out as being very well-informed and relaxed. It is great to be able to view and consider the previous results. You provide a good overview of how the Program has been successful and I don’t see why the board would not renew the lease. Great work, thanks!


15 Jim Tattrie { 11.30.08 at 10:15 pm }

A very professional and polished presentation. Great Job!

You’ve made your argument very clear and considering the success to date of the program it would be difficult not support your request for funding. I guess the only concern that I would have is how it fits into the bigger picture. What else must be given up to support this program, even if it is a really good program?

As was pointed out, you really convey a passion for your project, but the pie is only so big and fairness and consideration for all must be a priority. So my recommendation for funding would be a definite yes if the money was there, but probably no if it would mean that others with equally valid request would go wanting.


16 Jarrod Bell { 12.01.08 at 7:45 pm }

Jim that is something I recognized on the site in the strengths and weaknesses of the proposal. There has been line item budgeting for the program for quite a few years however we are moving into a period where we will have to make some decisions due to changes to government funding formulas. It is a quite difficult process to cut some perfectly good programs but also necessary as you point out. I’m confident that through pitches like this it will not be one of them!

Thanks,
JB

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