“It has been a privilege to be a partner in NEISD’s innovative and straightforward approach to leveraging instructional technology,” said David Solomon, the executive vice president and general manager of Lightspeed Technologies. “The NEISD Technology Services team has been a model example of how to manage installation, implementation, and teacher participation. It is gratifying to see so many teachers embrace our solutions quickly and experience immediate benefits in the classroom.”
According to James Hoyer, an Assistant Director of Instructional Technology at NEISD, the district chose Lightspeed because of the instant impact to all learners in the classroom. Hoyer recalls being on a campus walk midway through the initiative, “As I opened the classroom door, the teacher was getting her next class settled at the beginning of the next period,” he said. “I could literally see the physical energy she used to raise her ‘teacher voice’ above the commotion of 27 students in transition.” He particularly recalled thinking, “Oh my goodness, we’ve got to get this teacher a Lightspeed system.”
To manage such a large rollout, Hoyer started by doing campus walkthroughs with administrators from each campus to determine eligible instructional settings for Lightspeed installation. He and a team of 22 instructional technology specialists then worked to verify and ensure all appropriate classrooms were accounted for and identified for installation of the new systems.
When it came to training teachers, Hoyer said the simplicity of the product allowed the district to offer simple advice on using the wearable Flexmike: “You plug it in, turn it on, and it works. Strap the mic around your neck and go do what you do. Now every student will hear your voice as if you were having a personal conversation with each of them directly!”
The district is encouraging all teachers to use their Lightspeed systems. Throughout the year, random Mondays are deemed “Mike-Up Mondays,” where district specialists and campus leadership are making special note to encourage all teachers to use the systems and provide assistance when needed to ensure the system is functioning properly. District employees also use the Lightspeed systems themselves when they gather teachers for PD events.
Hoyer, who has been in district-level educational technology for 17 years, concluded, “I have been involved in a number of technology initiatives, and none has been as easy to implement or as functionally reliable as Lightspeed amplification systems. It’s some of the best instructional technology money we have spent during my tenure.”
About Lightspeed Technologies
Established in 1990, Lightspeed Technologies is the trusted provider in classroom audio solutions. Our passion is to improve the listening and learning environment for every child. We believe strengthening the connection between teachers and students is at the heart of learning.
Lightspeed classroom audio systems allow teachers to speak in normal conversational tones while being assured that every child has an equal opportunity to hear all of the instruction. The no-installation, easy-to-use Redcat provides clear, low-volume, highly intelligible sound that is evenly distributed throughout the classroom so every child hears every word. The company’s audio system for small group instruction, Flexcat, gives teachers the ability to gain insights into small group interactions and learning. The Topcat has become the premier solution for new construction and renovations due to its ease of installation, wireless connectivity, and remarkable audio quality. For more information about Lightspeed classroom audio products, visit Lightspeed-tek.com.