Jeffco schools face numerous technical issues on first day of remote learning

District systems down, Zoom down Monday morning

Staff report
Posted 8/24/20

A number of technical difficulties came as an unexpected addition to the first day of school for Jeffco students, Aug. 24. The Monday was a remote learning day for all students, who will engage …

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Jeffco schools face numerous technical issues on first day of remote learning

District systems down, Zoom down Monday morning

Posted

A number of technical difficulties came as an unexpected addition to the first day of school for Jeffco students, Aug. 24. The Monday was a remote learning day for all students, who will engage remotely for the first two weeks of the school year, up until Labor Day. After that, students have been given the option to continue remote learning or engage in some extent of in-person learning, depending on their grade level.

As students logged on for the first time this academic year Monday morning, many were met with several different challenges. Platforms Zoom and Schoology, used by Jeffco schools, experienced nationwide technical issues the morning of Aug. 24 that affected Jeffco students, district spokeswoman Cameron Bell said in a statement for local media.

Zoom released an Aug. 24 statement saying that users in many parts of the world had reported being unable to start or join meetings, or unable to visit the website at all. Around 10:45 a.m., the company posted on Twitter, saying that the issues had been fixed.

A second difficulty reported to the district by Jeffco parents was “issues with logging into Jeffco systems and viewing our website,” Bell said.

“Due to wanting to allow the most flexibility for our families to choose their learning environment preference, many schools were still adjusting class rosters late into last week and even this morning,” Bell's statement continued. “This caused some log jams in the systems that our registration and rostering program feeds and some families were not able to log in for lessons at designated class times.”

Bell's statement also reported a third issue experienced by a handful of Jeffco families on Aug. 24.

“We had a couple of virtual class/parent meetings interrupted by 'bad actors' who displayed various types of inappropriate material during these live sessions,” Bell's statement said. “Some teachers and school staff, in their excitement to welcome students back and to ensure the learning began, implemented workarounds that unfortunately involved systems and protocols that were not in line with our official guidance and best practices for holding virtual classes and meetings. Staff have been previously provided training and guidance, however we will be reinforcing the protocols, guidance, and best practices for conducting online classes and meetings today.”

Jeffco staff have also been reminded of the district's all-day Ed Tech Support office hours, a hotline for educators to troubleshoot Jeffco system issues. The hotline has been in place since Aug. 14.

As of 3 p.m. on Aug. 24, most of the above issues had been resolved, Bell said. The district does not anticipate future technical difficulties with its own systems.

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