Technology has long been a part of the Anaheim Union High School District’s vision to graduate college and career-ready students, but equipping almost 30,000 students with digital devices across one of the largest districts in California was a sizable investment - particularly 20 years ago. To safeguard their investment, administrators have relied on Absolute Control® from the very beginning.
“We started using Absolute when we had a rash of laptop thefts,” Erik Greenwood, Chief Technology Officer at Anaheim Union said. “Absolute Control stemmed the thefts and because it was so effective, we now use it on all our endpoint devices.”
Historically, devices didn’t go home with students. There were very few exceptions; devices remained at school and in charging carts while not in classroom use. But when the COVID-19 outbreak hit in March, the district had to transition to a fully remote learning environment.
As students were being dismissed for remote learning, IT was formulating a plan for getting technology into the hands of those who didn’t have access to it at home. They had to quickly configure 7,000 Chromebooks and 2,000 mobile hotspots to be distributed to families in need. Each of those devices had Absolute Control turned on, so Anaheim Union IT could track the ones being checked out, even after they left the school network, with an unbreakable digital tether and always-on, two-way connection.
“As you can imagine, our school board is keenly interested in how many students have been equipped with technology,” Greenwood said. “With Absolute, we can go in and look at devices and match them with student numbers. It’s been a very helpful way to tighten up the data quality across our new check-out system.”
While Anaheim Union’s original intent in using Absolute was theft deterrent, they rely on the solution for so much more today. Comprehensive fleet visibility and control allows them to better leverage the assets they already have and respond to student needs in a timely way as they arise.
Because the future of learning remains somewhat in flux, Anaheim Union has focused on honing the mechanics of a few different learning models – in person learning, a fully virtual delivery or a hybrid approach. With the capabilities they get from Absolute, the district is much more prepared to roll out whatever model makes the most sense at the time.