Mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones have provided many more options for teachers, students and staff to bring education into the 21st century. But those devices require apps to unleash their full potential, and since apps can be designed by just about anyone (even without knowledge of coding), we need to be careful about which apps are installed on district devices. To ensure the smooth operation of our district technology infrastructure, there is a process in place for app installation. Please review all of the steps below and complete them as needed.
Step 1: Verify That the App Has Been Approved
The first step to getting app installed is checking to see if the app is already on our CUSD Approved App List. If it's on the list, you're all set to proceed to step 2!
If the app is not on the CUSD Approved App List, you will need to complete an App Approval Request. The information in your request will be forwarded to Information Systems, where a compatibility evaluation will take place. You will be notified when this evaluation has been completed and be told whether or not your app was approved.
If the app you are requesting is instructional or curricular in nature, your request will also be forwarded to the IRC. You will be asked to make a brief (15-20 minutes) presentation to appropriate IRC staff on the app and its potential use in the classroom. You may wish to review the Supplementary Textbook or Instructional Material Evaluation Instrument that will be used to evaluate the instructional appropriateness of the app before submitting your request (if you get an error message when clicking on the link, select "Open in Reading View" to continue).
When your request is submitted, you will receive a confirmation e-mail that includes details on what needs to be done next to complete your request (e.g., scheduling your presentation if needed). If your app is approved by IS (and approved by the IRC if it is instructional), it will be added to the CUSD Approved App List and you can proceed to step 2.
Step 2: Purchase Your App
If your app happens to be free (and many of them are), you can skip to step 3! However, some quality educational apps cost money, or paid versions of free apps may eliminate distracting ads. If the app you are requesting costs money, you will need to order the app using IFAS. Talk to your site administrator to determine the funding source for the purchase, then enter the order directly into IFAS at your site (at any time of year). Some important things to remember:
- In the description, write Mobile App and then the title of the app.
- Because app costs can fluctuate, be sure to determine the current approximate cost of the app from the appropriate app store. You can suggest a vendor, but the purchasing department will still attempt to get best price from a registered vendor. Use the Dummy vendor in IFAS and, if desired, put your recommended vendor in the notes.
- A correct capital budget code MUST be used. Because the law categorizes apps as capital, app purchases may not come out of M&O (Maintenance and Operations) funds. Also, certain codes apply to apps purchased for students, and others for teachers. If you have questions about budget codes, call the district Business Office at x7670, or e-mail Mary Lou Hagerty before entering.
- It is important to plan ahead and request your software early. Some app titles are already on a pre-bid list and have a shorter turnaround time, but many other titles must go out to bid for as long as 60 days. If we anticipate spending more than $10,000 district-wide for any cumulative purchase, there will need to be three quotes. If we anticipate spending over $100,000 cumulatively, a bid or RFP will need to take place. This process may take up to 120 days. Batched app orders must also be approved at a governing board meeting, which typically occurs twice a month.
If you are paying for your app using a grant, the grant must have been pre-approved by the district. If your grant has not been approved, please complete the CUSD Grant Pre-Approval process.
Personal funds cannot be used to purchase apps! If your app was not purchased using district or grant funds, it may not be installed, and you will not be reimbursed.
iTunes and Google Play gift cards cannot be used to purchase apps for iOS or Android devices. Apps are purchased using vouchers paid for by district, site, or grant funds (e.g., Apple Volume Purchase Program).
Step 3: Request App Installation
When your app has been purchased, the final step is to submit a CSR to have your app installed. Be sure to indicate:
- your work site
- the tag number(s) and location(s) of the device(s) on which the app should be installed
Failure to correctly and completely provide information on the CSR may result in a delay of the installation.