Easy Digital Business Cards with HiHello

free digital cards

image of digital business card from hihello

We are excited to share the tool, HiHello. Spend about 5 minutes getting signed up and entering in your information and you get a professional looking email signature and Zoom background. The Zoom backgrounds (pictured below) are especially helpful because they can display your name, position, and pronouns which is helpful if you are in a lot of meetings with families and community members. You can also upload the P-CCS logo or your school logo. Get the mobile app and have access to a digital business cards that can easily be shared. Check it out!

image with hihello zoom background

Suggested Laptop Maintenance

The tech department would like to suggest the following maintenance steps to ensure the best performance from your new laptop.

  • Clear your Chrome Browsing Data and Cookies every couple of weeks (with Time range All Time) / Ditto for all Microsoft Edge users (click here for easy steps)
  • Do a full restart of your laptop at least once a week
  • If you teach in the Virtual Academy, at least monthly come onto campus (the parking lot is sufficient) with your computer. After initially connecting via district WIFI, restart your laptop and log back in, then allow 15-20 minutes for any updates to run in the background while you are on it. So if you are planning to come on-campus for any reason, please bring your laptop, and restart and log into it when there!

Making sure you perform periodic restarts and logging into your laptop while on the district network does several important things to improve performance including clearing the laptop’s Random Access Memory (RAM) which can otherwise over time bog down its system resources and allowing important and useful district updates to to run at start up (as one example, a needed component to run the updated Canvas Studio Screen Recorder requires a one time laptop restart and new log in while in district so a log in script that is associated with user accounts can install it).

We appreciate your help to ensure the best possible performance of your laptop. Please submit a tech ticket if you have any questions.

How To Install Apps on New Dell Laptops

As of now, all instructional staff working with K-12 students should have been issued a new Dell Latitude 3520 laptop, with the exception of a few make-ups that have yet to be deployed. We appreciate everyone’s patience and want to thank staff for being cooperative, given our expedited time frame to issue all devices in the district. Even we are adjusting to the new technology and all the changes involved with the new Dell laptops. Besides the differences in the look and feel of staff laptops, one of the biggest changes is the addition of the Microsoft Company Portal.

Intune Company Portal - Apps on Google Play

What is the Company Portal?

The Company Portal is part of a new data management system that allows PCCS staff to securely download and install district-vetted programs and updates. The Company Portal can be thought of as an App Store for PCCS, including all apps and utilities used in-district. We surveyed the list of programs that were being used by teachers and staff members in the district and included the vast majority of these in the current app list in the Company Portal. The list of available apps in the portal is ever-growing,

You may have noticed that installing programs outside of the Company Portal prompts for an administrator username and password. This is completely to be expected and is designed to protect your laptop and files safe from malware or malicious programs. Safeguarding devices connected to our network protects our infrastructure and makes our districts less susceptible to cyber attacks. It’s also something our insurance company has begun to insist on for us to remain with coverage.

How do I install the Company Portal on my computer?

The Company Portal should install on your laptop after about an hour of initial use. Once you log into your laptop for the first time, it gets pushed out to your device and usually takes about that long to appear. Once installed, and following another restart, a shortcut to the Company Portal should later appear on your desktop. If you do not see an icon for Company Portal, it’s possible that it hasn’t been pushed to your device yet. A restart often helps, but it is also possible that you can find the Company Portal by searching for it.

If you click the Start button and begin to search for “company portal”, you should see the app populate in the search results. Once the program opens, feel free to right-click the icon at the bottom of the screen and select Pin to taskbar so it is readily accessible when you want to open the Company Portal in the future.

Once the Company Portal opens, click Apps to see a full list of all available apps in the Company Portal.

How do I install the apps I need?

Click the app you’d like to install and click Install. Please do not disconnect from the Internet or close the lid during the installation process. Some apps are larger than others and require more time to download and properly install.

You will know an app is completely installed when you see the blue checkmark and Installed at the top of the screen.

Should I install everything in the Company Portal?

There is no need to install all available apps in the Company Portal. If you have a specific software need, there is likely an app added to the library to meet that need. See the table below for some examples.

To use: Install these apps:
Smart Notebook software SMART Education Software

SMART Product Drivers

Microsoft Office Microsoft 365 Apps for Windows 10

Please note, if it is a paid app or subscription service (and some of them are), and you don’t have the license for it, you won’t be able to run it even if you do install it.

 

There is software I would like to use and it’s not available in the Company Portal. How can I install it?

If there is software you’d like to use and it provides educational value, you can request to have it added into the Company Portal. Please click here to submit a tech request and choose Computer Software Request. We will gladly evaluate the request and add it to the Company Portal if it is something Teaching and Learning and/or the Technology Department deem educationally valuable for staff members.

 

I still don’t see the Company Portal on my laptop. What do I do?

If you don’t see the Company Portal, even after searching for it, it may be due to a setting tied to your logon profile. Please submit a tech request and let us know so we can look into it!

 

Have any questions?

If you have any questions about how the Company Portal works or need help setting up any apps, please submit a tech request and a member of our department would be happy to help you.

Seesaw’s Monthly Feature Update Report AND Seesaw Connect

Seesaw is now maintaining an up-to-date online set of slides reviewing their monthly updates and showcasing what’s new as well as lessons they’ve introduced and webinars they’re offering.  Teachers who use Seesaw are encouraged to bookmark the site for periodic reference as the service continues to evolve.

Seesaw updates

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Seesaw Connect 2022

Seesaw Connect is a FREE virtual conference for any educator. Explore short on-demand courses that interest you, no matter where you are in your Seesaw journey. Get inspired by passionate educators that share simple ways to engage students. VISIT HERE TO LEARN MORE AND ENROLL

Seesaw Connect

Microsoft Office 365 Now Available for Instructional Staff on New Dell Laptops

MS Office 365

We are very excited to announce that, starting today, all P-CCS instructional staff with a new Dell laptop are now able to access Microsoft Office 365. Prior to today, only a limited number of staff had access to Microsoft Office. Now, all instructional staff with a new Dell laptop can access the web version of Office 365 and/or install it on their new district laptop.

To install Microsoft Office 365, simply open the Company Portal, select Microsoft Office 365, and click install. For more detailed directions, please follow these step-by-step instructions.

As a reminder, please be patient while software is installed through the Company Portal. If you are logging into your laptop for the first time, the initial setup of your laptop (including the install of the Company Portal) can take up to 2 hours.

Additionally, students do not have access to Microsoft Office 365 through P-CCS, so please be sure to provide documents in a format that is compatible with Google Drive.

Please note that while we are able to offer free access to Microsoft Office 365 due to our current agreement with Microsoft. Microsoft is able to change these terms at any time. While not expected, if this occurs, we would no longer be able to offer staff continued access to Microsoft Office 365 and would do our best to notify affected staff as soon as possible should we need to rescind access.

Technology housekeeping before break, please and thanks!

Tech break checklist

Happy Spring Break all!

For those of you about to begin a well deserved spring break, which we hope will be all you hope for and a bit more, before you leave Friday afternoon…

WOULD YOU PLEASE SECURE ALL VALUABLES in the classrooms and office spaces you inhabit. This includes laptops, document cameras, Apple TVs, remotes, and interactive pens.

Further, would you please make sure all iPads and Chromebooks are in their carts and those CARTS ARE LOCKED and plugged in before leaving.

Finally, would you please also POWER OFF any of the following equipment, if it is equipment you handle:

  • projectors
  • sound amps
  • SmartBoards
  • desktop computers
  • monitors
  • printers

THANK YOU for your cooperation.

REMC’s April Virtual Courses, earn 10 Free SCECHs

REMC April courses

Spring is here – sharpen your skills with a REMC Course 
Finish the school year strong by applying new tips and tricks to your classroom. REMC offers instructor-led courses that provide 10 free SCECHs, and are open to all Michigan school personnel.

Registration deadline is Friday, April 1st. Through the support of REMC SAVE’s vendor partners, all courses are FREE and there are no SCECH fees. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to learn, connect, collaborate and grow from the convenience of your home.

Check out April 2022 courses here:

Register by Friday, April 1st. You will receive a welcome email with the course login and other information prior to the start date. If you have questions or need further assistance with your registration, please contact Erin Rommeck, REMC Event Coordinator.

Instructional staff new laptops’ FAQs and general guidance

As a reminder, our new FAQ page is available to address questions surrounding the new instructional staff Windows 10 Dell laptops. Questions found in service tickets are helping inform what is shared on this site.

Staff being issued these laptops are also encouraged to review:

  • Our blog post on backing up files on your current Windows laptop to Google Drive.

  • A bit more visual guidance on using Google Drive for Windows to assist with backing up your Windows laptop’s files/folders to your Google Drive.

  • Remember you can also copy any files/folders from your laptop into your network G drive.

  • Here is a humorous video reminder on what not to do with your new laptops. While a bit tongue in cheek, we certainly want to encourage as much stewardship as possible – they are really nice computers and we hope to have them in circulation and used for a long time. Thanks for doing your part.

New Staff Laptops FAQs

FAQs for laptops

We have added a section in our FAQ page to address questions surrounding the new laptops. As the school year continues, we plan to offer responses to other frequently asked questions we hear within this same site.

Technology housekeeping before break, please and thanks!

Tech break checklist

Happy holidays all.

For those of you about to begin a well deserved two week winter break, which we hope will be all you hope for and a bit more, before you leave Friday afternoon…

WOULD YOU PLEASE SECURE ALL VALUABLES in the classrooms and office spaces you inhabit. This includes laptops, document cameras, Apple TVs, remotes, and interactive pens.

Further, would you please make sure all iPads and ChromeBooks are in their carts and those CARTS ARE LOCKED and plugged in before leaving.

Finally, would you please also POWER OFF any of the following equipment, if it is equipment you handle:

  • projectors
  • sound amps
  • SmartBoards
  • desktop computers
  • monitors
  • printers

THANK YOU for your cooperation.

Tech break checklist