Our iBook and a Podcast by Kate Arnott

Not only was the iBook about Teaching and Learning in our College recently published on iTunes, but we also attracted some attention from Kate Arnott, a podcaster who spoke at the Apple Distinguished School Conference 2017 about change.

Hi all

I would like to commend two recent GCC associated publications to you.You will recall that, as part of our application to be admitted  as an Apple Distinguished School we were required to prepare an iBook. The iBook is a collation of some of the exciting ways we are marrying technology and education here at the College. You would have seen the iBook in its last iteration but the final version is something really fantastic. I would commend it to all of you.

You can link to it directly here.  https://itun.es/au/oEEblb.l

DeLorean Project Podcast

While we were at the Apple Distinguished School conference recently we attracted the attention of a podcaster who runs an education and technology podcast called Leading Change. She was a former journalist with the ABC for many years.The podcast really captures some of the excitement the aims and the successes around the DL project in an extensive interview with Rob, lecturers from USC and some of the DL kids. It is good stuff.The Leading Change Podcast on the DeLorean Project is now live on all the podcast sites. We’ve embedded it on our website with links to iTunes and Podbean for iPhone and Android users respectively, but it can be played directly from our webpage:


It’s exciting to be part of both these projects and to see how the Lord as blessed us and far we have travelled over the past 17 years.

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Budget Planning for 2018

This is the time of year IT Managers in Australia do their Budget Planning, broadly speaking my main projects for 2018 are as follows.

  • Extend 1:1 into year 1 (Currently we are 1:1 from grade 2 – 12)
  • Encourage a few teacher to become Google Credited Teachers.
  • Encourage teachers to become Apple Credited Teachers.

Other points of significance, (which were approved). 

  • Upgrade existing HP Wireless to Extreme Wireless
  • Upgrade existing HP Core to Extreme Core (in three locations)
  • Upgrade existing EMC Storage (SAN) to new EMC Storage 40 TB (SAN)

Equipment Refresh

  • 60 x  iPad Pro’s  13″ retina displays – (3 Trolleys with 20 iPads in each)
  • 320 x Macbook Airs for Students and Teachers
  • 25 x New iMacs

Consulting and Training 

  • Training and Consultancy about (cheaper than employing a specialist)
  • Sophos Health check
  • Security Audit

Software Purchases and Renewal

  • Amazon Webs Services – Offsite Storage and Solutions
  • Microsoft Renewals
  • JAMF Pro

Notes:  I run a small team of three staff under the age of 30, we manage about 2000 Devices with JAMF Pro. I like to think we are one of the most advanced schools on the Sunshine Coast and I run it all on budget of a little over 1 million dollars.



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Apple Distinguished School Summit 2017 (Gold Coast)

The Apple Distinguished School Summit was a significant milestone in our “Apple Journey” and was of particularly enjoyable for the following of reasons.

  • As a ‘Mac Evangelist‘ I feel that the effort invested in moving our College over to Mac has has been rewarded, not only in academic achievement but also in recognition.
  • It served as clear and distinctive progress indicator in our journey which began in 2009/2010, when we first introduced Macs to our College.
  • It brought the team together for few days to reflect on where we have been and to look further ahead to where we are going.
  • It was an opportunity to share and network with other ADS schools.


  • Lengthy discussions about Artificial Intelligence in the car.
  • A chance to catch up with Geoff Powell who advised me at the start of our journey (circa 2010/2011) .

Date:  Thursday 13 July – Friday 14 July 2017
Location: St Hilda’s School


My Sessions

Day One:
Workshop 1: King’s College – iTunes U in the Classroom
Workshop 2: Corpus Christi College – Creating Teaching Resources

Day Two:
Workshop 1: Technical Update
Workshop 1: Anyone Can Code

Thursday 13 July

8:30am  Registration, Morning Refreshments, and Networking
9:30am Welcome and Introductions
10:15am Keynote: Mark McCrindle
11:15am Morning Tea
11:35am Leadership workshop
12:40pm Lunch
1:30pm School-led workshops
3:45pm Queensland Showcase
5:00pm Day one close
Networking Drinks and Canapés

Friday 14 July 2017

7:45am Coaches depart hotels
8:30am Day two welcome
8:35am Keynote speakers
10:30am Morning Tea
10:50am Apple-led workshops
12:50am Lunch
1:30am Regional Meetings
2:15pm Keynote speaker
3:00pm Day two close

My personal doodles of the Apple Distinguished School Summit 2017 PDF for what they’re worth or you can just look at the pretty pictures below, which I use to jog my memory.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

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Aruba Wireless vs Rukus Wireless (2017)

Over the next 12 months, (sometime in 2018), I expect to test, select and install an new wireless solution of the college and the solution will most likely be one of either Rukus, Aruba or Ubiquiti.  I’m also searching for and robust ‘on-boarding solution‘, our two main contenders are CloudPath and ClearPass

Reliable wireless is a modern day challenge.

No only is reliable wireless is a challenge to implement but once it’s installed you’re stuck with what you chosen for up to 5 years.

I’ve installed a number of different solutions since 2009 when I installed my first school wide wireless which was a D-Link Solution, which caused me no end difficulty.  You can read about my D-Link experience here, or about my Xirrus experience here or my HP Wireless experience here

Wireless Specification (Wish List)

  • Easy to manage
  • Easy to identify clients
  • Easy and sustainable on-boarding
  • Massive Data Capacity and throughput
  • Solution to be sustainable for 5 or 6 years
  • No Surprises


  • Aruba is an HP company
  • All my switches are currently HP
  • Clearpass for access control and Single Sign on
  • AirWave for management
  • Aruba Instant Product for quick start without a controller

Aruba Marketing

If an attacker secretly breaches your schools network perimeter security defences with compromised credentials, how do you detect and stop them before they do serious damage?


  • Unique Technology

Rucks Marketing


  • Very affordable (more so that Aruba or Rukus)
  • Proven history

Onboarding Solutions

Cloudpath vs Clearpass

Last Updated 

Thursday, 20 July 2017

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Thoughts about Document Management

As a college we have been considering document management for a number of years and we have been very careful to brush off numerous attempts by venders enticing us into a dark netherworld of document management.

In my opinion there are only two occasions when it’s right to venture into document management.

  1. When your business absolutely demands it,  (i.e massive volume of paper or to produce a body of evidence, or significant cost saving.)
  2. When it can easily be down without entrapment or risk, and there is sufficient information to show that it will improve the business process.


Cost Saving: Significant cost savings are suggested by most vendors.

Speed and Efficiency: I understand how and why technology offers significant improvement, however if not done well it easily introduces unnecessary problems and frustration.


Continued archival requirement:  You will always need to keep backups and archives, this comes at a cost. Once you venture into document management, you will need to manage and keep managing a number of additional systems and software.

Staffing: Every new system brings with it a dependancy on staff and skills, I like to cross train my staff, this is not always possible.

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A Review of VIVI in Education

VIVI is a wireless presentation solution, a simple blue box connected to a Data Projector or TV which allows a teacher or presenter to roam about the classroom and remain wirelessly connected to the TV or Data Projector.

Vivi is a wireless presentation solution, with features quite similar to ‘AirPlay’ on an Apple TV, with a few extra features thrown in for good measure.

Background: We had endless trouble with our Apple TVs in 2014 and 2015, you can read about our Apple TV Experience (nightmare) here and if I ever work out what the issue was I will gladly share the solution on this Blog – until then, believe me Apple TV’s don’t work in an education environment.

Questions about VIVI

VIVI make some bold statements on their website so I’ll evaluate VIVI using the same questions they present on their website http://vivi.io – I will answer each question by presenting my own experiences with VIVI.

Does it offer true screen mirroring?

VIVI marketing: Vivi offers true full screen mirroring.

  • It transfers exactly what is on your screen to a data projector.
  • It appears to support higher resolutions better than Apple TV.

How reliable is the solution’s wireless connectivity?

VIVI marketing: We won’t bore you with technical details, other than to say our purpose-built technology is as reliable as it gets.

Is it easy to use? Really easy to use?

VIVI marketing: Vivi is the simplest wireless presenting software on the market and requires no user training.

I proved this with the welcome email I sent out. (please see below).

The whole point about choosing VIVI is that it should be easy enough to use without further instruction, so please give it a go.  

On the first day I sent out a technician to assist staff.  It seemed fitting that Ryan should be available to ensure it works as expected.

Does it stream smooth, high quality video?

VIVI marketing: Vivi plays videos directly over the wired network like a media player – freeing up your mobile device for other tasks.

Direct Play from YouTube.com – We love this feature, when you play YouTube videos it plays directly from YouTube using the wired network.  It doesn’t get much better than that.

Not sure how other networks function, may need to test this further.

Can it capture and save screens for future reference?

VIVI marketing: Vivi is one of the few solutions on the market that does.

How easy will it be to introduce and integrate into your school or workplace?

VIVI marketing: But because Vivi supports AD/SAML single sign on, your staff will be set to go from day one – using their existing usernames and passwords.

Is it constantly evolving?

VIVI marketing: And we never stop listening to what our customers want.

How easy is it to maintain?

VIVI marketing: Vivi’s cloud-based administration portal makes it easy to manage your Vivi fleet, rename units, perform bulk updates – and assess the health of all units in an instant.

Why choose VIVI?

I was at AIS ICT Conference in Canberra 2017 listening in on a discussion about Wireless Projection, various schools were offering up suggestions and the conversation weighed in on quality, performance and price.

I installed VIVI in L8, a large teaching space with 8 x 75 inch TV’s on mobile stands.

L8 a Large Learning Space with 8 TV’s

L8 is flexible learning space in which I’ve installed 8 large 75″ TV’s I’ve also provided microphones and sound system to help teachers present more easily

Glasshouse IT Managers Event

8 TV’s with VIVI at the front, side and back of flexible learning space.

VIVI Installation

  • I gave Ryan the VIVI box and asked him to find out how it worked and to please install it in L8.
  • We wanted teachers and students to login to VIVI with their usernames and network accounts so some Active Directory configuration was required.
  • We enabled SAML, our two choices were using SAML or exposing SAML externally, we chose to use SAML because we had it available for other products.
  • We allowed VIVI through our Firewall,  and made a reservation so VIVI can get to YouTube.
  • Uploaded the VIVI Software Package to Self Services – Self Service is a Jamf Pro / Casper page from which our staff and students can easily download designated software.

Training Staff

I wanted to be sure that Teachers would use VIVI so we removed the Apple Mini Display Port / HTMI Cable from the Room.

If teachers or students want to use the Projector + 8 broadcast TV’s scattered in the room they would need to install and use VIVI software.

I took VIVI at their word “Vivi is the simplest wireless presenting software on the market and requires no user training” so I send out the following notice to let staff know about VIVI.

Please welcome VIVI to our College.png

Week Two

Teacher are having Student present and because of familiarity an time they are simply are reverting back to the HDMI Cable, because its quicker and easier than getting the students ton install and use VIVI.   – (VIVI is still in use more than 80 % of the week.)

Week Three, Four, Five and Six

The testing process stretched out longer than we though it would,  but there in was the success.

All the users in L8, about 200 students and teachers, have used VIVI without complaint for the past 6 weeks.

Cost Considerations

We’re a College with over 60 Learning Spaces,  (including our Large 75 inch TV’s we might have about 80 screens we want to use VIVI on).  That’s a lot of money to spend.

The BETA Program

I contacted VIVI about splitting the screen given that I have 8 screens in L8 so I might occasionally want the to group 2 of the screen separately and then broadcast to both screens separately form the the other five screen.

VIVI invited us to be part of this Beta Program, and I will report on how this goes in week three, they also very kindly sent me a second VIVI box to run trials with.  (already I have sufficient evidence to suggest VIVI is a product worth investing in).


Wednesday, 9 August 2017

VIVI is a very well thought out product,




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Thank you Julian at St Teresa, Noosaville

I’ve known Julian the IT Manager at St Teresa’s to be kind and generous with his knowledge and information and I’ve have long admired his positive attitude and approach to overcoming hurdles and providing efficient services to the staff and students at St Teresa’s.

Julian he was instrumental in providing me with quality information about starting and managing a 1 to 1 program when I first rolled our our 1:1 program in 2010.

We met again this week to discuss technologies and compare notes and we touched on some of the following subjects.

  • NAPLAN and the future of using iPads and Macbooks for assessment.
  • Risks of using email as a communication tool for students, a preferred option would be to use a blogging program of some sort where all student are able to see a teacher response to an academic question.
  • The MAC SHACK and using students to assist with technology.
  • Deep Freeze and how it can help avoid re-imaging  student loan computers.
  • The possibility of meeting us with Redlands College to examine how they use iPads in Education and for accessment i.e NAPLAN.

I had a productive couple of hours and hope to do this again in the future.

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