Planning for a Digital Future
School system leaders need guidance to advance their technology goals-and overcome both the expected and unexpected challenges. This is why CoSN developed a resource to support their efforts. The CoSN Digital Leap Matrix outlines the practices needed to be a successful digital school system. The Peer Review process uses this Matrix to determine how a district aligns with best practices identified by peers who have successfully converted to a digital environment. This easy to read infographic describes the benefits of a Peer Review.
The effort needed to connect siloed systems is expensive and time-consuming. Interconnected systems directly translate to an improved data security posture for your school system. Included in the Peer Review is an interoperability analysis with actionable steps a school system might take to improve each component in the interoperability process.
Cybersecurity Best Practices
School system leaders, including technology leaders, need to protect their networks and information security, analyze their current status, and validate what they are doing well. The Peer Review provides school systems with both validation on actions that are currently operational as well as strategic guidance on ways to improve network security.
"The CoSN Peer Review process assisted us in identifying areas of potential growth in our department. Since the Peer Review our department has worked very closely with school sites, departments, and vendors to uphold our strong commitment to student data privacy. We continue to work on educating staff, students, and our community on the importance of digital citizenship and data privacy across platforms. The CoSN Peer Review gave us another piece of the foundation on which we build our processes and procedures around this very important topic."
-Tiffany Norton, Chief Innovation and Information Officer, Desert Sands Unified School District (CA)
"As the Director for a small Technology team, it was really helpful to have an outside agency meet with different stakeholders in our district to assess the work we are doing. The list of commendations and recommendations were shared with members of our community and will serve as the basis of our next long term Technology plan that will be tied to the district strategic plan that is currently in development. [We] refer to many of the recommendations that were identified to ensure we are using Technology in a safe and reliable environment that supports staff curriculum and student learning."
-Kadion Philips, Director of Technology, Oxford Public Schools (MA)
"The Peer Review process was so helpful to us in highlighting not only our gaps, but also showing us our strengths. We built upon those strengths and were able to address the gaps with an increase in our technology budget. The final debrief meeting that was held with Senior Staff and the President of our school, went a very long way in moving the needle for us in regards to funding our improvement requests."
-Milena Streen, VP and Chief Information Officer, Saint Ignatius School (OH)
What are the Foundational Best Practices Guiding the Review?
School system leaders need guidance to advance their technology goals—and overcome both the expected and unexpected challenges. This is why CoSN developed a resource to support their efforts. The CoSN Matrix outlines the practices needed to be a successful digital school system. The review process will use this Matrix to determine how a district aligns with best practices identified by peers who have successfully converted to a digital environment. The Peer Review, built on the Digital Leap Success Matrix, is a rigorous process available only to CoSN member institutions.
A peer review team will visit your district to assess your operations.
Days 1 and 2
The Team will spend the first meeting confirming priorities with the lead sponsor. The remainder of the day, as well as the second day, includes interviewing key leaders within the district.
The Peer Review Team will provide a verbal assessment of their recommendations and discuss initial thoughts.
A full written report summarizing observations and detailing the team assessment evaluation will then be prepared by the group leader and submitted in draft format within two weeks. The basic outline of the final report is as follows:
- Purpose of the Peer Review
- Members of the Review Team
- Process used to gather information
- Summary Recommendations
- Assessments grouped by general categories aligned to the CoSN Digital Leap Success Matrix. These general categories are described in Appendix 1.
- Recommendations by the review team
a. Bios for review team
b. Agenda for the site visit
c. List of documents that were reviewed
d. List of district personnel interviewed
What will it cost my district?
For Districts with fewer than 20,000 students, the service fee is $11,000, inclusive of all travel expenses (Continental U.S).
Please contact us for a custom quote if your school district has an enrollment of 20,000 - 35,000 students. We are not performing reviews for districts with enrollments greater than 35,000 students at this time.