The award-winning Shaker Heights High School student news organization

The Shakerite

The award-winning Shaker Heights High School student news organization

The Shakerite

The award-winning Shaker Heights High School student news organization

The Shakerite

New and Improved

District installs PCs that feature larger monitors, more mobility
Ruben Rippner
A pile of decommissioned computers in the basement await pick up and recycling.

The district replaced computers in the high school and Woodbury Elementary School over the summer.

The district purchased 230 desktops at $904 per unit, according to Executive Director of Technology and Media Services John Rizzo. At the high school, the library and Rooms 109, 200 and 229 got replacement computers. “In Woodbury, it was all the classrooms, but that’s one computer per classroom,” he said.

Usually, the district keeps computers in circulation for five years. “We have them on a replacement cycle. So they’ve already reached the five-year mark, which typically is end-of-life for a computer,” Rizzo said.

The district tries to space out replacement cycles so they don’t have to replace too many devices at once. “Typically in a given summer we’re replacing devices en masse somewhere,” Rizzo said. “We try to stagger it as much as possible so we’re not doing all the buildings at once, which is a lot more expensive all at once and a lot of work to get done in a few months over the summer.”

The computer replacements are also staggered within the high school, according to art teacher and Gristmill advisor James Rodems. “They were only changed in one of my classrooms,” Rodems said. “The computers that weren’t changed are still relevant, but they’re still getting older.”

The new computers are Lenovo M90a All-in-One desktops, which replaced the old Dell Optiplex 5040 SFF computers, which were released in 2015.

Rodems said the new computers will be easier to move from classroom to classroom. The new devices are all-in-ones; the computer is built into the display instead of being in a tower next to it. “I think the new computers that are in here, considering they’re all in one unit, are also easier to move if a room has to expand, or per say they have to get moved to another building,” he said.

Gristmill student Lucy Rostetter said that the new computers are noticeably better than the old ones. “I think the computers are much faster now,” she said.

In addition to increased power, the new monitors are larger, which are easier for students to use for class, according to Science Department Chairman James Schmidt, who teaches AP Computer Science A. “It’s nice for the students to be able to open their documentation for the assignment on one half of the screen, and have their compiler on the other half of the screen,” he said.

The district decommissions the computers at the end of their five-year cycle, according to Rizzo. “Then there’s a company that comes on a regular basis, or I guess as-needed basis, picks them up, and they recycle the computers,” he said.

Said Rizzo, “We try to stay ahead of it and be proactive so we don’t get in a situation where devices are down and not usable.”

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