Aaron Slutsky, and the Technology Department of the Burke County Schools, was looking to add Web 2.0 tools that would meet the needs of both the teachers and the department. They wanted to have administrative control, while still being simple and easy to use for the teachers. After trying and installing many different wiki engines, and then looking into online wiki hosts, they chose Wikispaces Private Label. They especially liked this plan as it gave them their own domain and an unlimited number of users.
The school began using wikis with two major goals in mind, one which was to give tech-savvy teachers, along with the technology department, a place to collaborate and be creative with their colleagues and students. The other goal was to give teachers who were not as familiar with the Internet a place to publish online. The simplicity and user-friendliness of Wikispaces made it easy for teachers to pick up, while offering more complex tools for those more accustomed to working with technology.
One of their spaces was used for a Summer Technology Conference. Most teachers in the district don’t have opportunities to attend state-wide conferences, so Aaron and his colleagues decided to bring the technology conference to them. They wanted to save costs and stay green by not printing handouts, and the technology aided them in this as well. All 13 collaborators were able to add their respective notes, videos, tables, and presentations to the space without any trouble.
Wikispaces has revolutionized the Burke County Schools. As Aaron says, “Working with Wikispaces has been amazing and their support is top notch. Our teachers love the simple word processing like interface. Because of Wikispaces, Burke County now has numerous techphobic teachers publishing content to the web.”