No one will ever forget 2020, especially not the students and teachers who had to navigate education during the tumultuous year in pandemic lockdown. The spring and fall of that year were studies in uncertainty, with elected officials, school districts, parents, and students all dealing with the ramifications of “remote” learning while simultaneously hoping for a return to in-school normalcy.
Cloud-based phone systems were there to power remote learning for any school district that needed it. And these tools are highly beneficial whether students are back in school full time, learning in a hybrid environment, or fully remote. CCi Voice offers an abundance of cloud-based tools to every type of learning institution. Let’s learn more about how this technology serves our schools!
Cloud-Based Technology And Schools
Cloud services aren’t new concepts in the education sector. In fact, a large percentage of institutions are already adopting a cloud-first strategy.
A pre-coronavirus survey showed 82 percent of education institutions host their email or productivity systems in the cloud, 52 percent leverage cloud-based learning management systems (LMS), and 39 percent store curriculum content in the cloud. The benefits cited most often were flexibility and efficiency, along with security, reliability, and cost savings.
However, the leveraging of cloud technology in education wasn’t put into high gear until coronavirus reared its head. The pandemic-fueled transition to online learning had institutions from kindergarten through higher education rethinking their cloud strategies. And during the first few months of the pandemic, cloud benefits such as scalability and affordability became critical to the education sector—and these benefits extend beyond the post-COVID world.
For starters, moving infrastructure services like hardware, network, and servers from a closet-based data center to the cloud frees up computing resources by eliminating overhead. What’s more, a flexible cloud mode makes it easy for schools to scale, upgrade, and add resources. And when usage is low, schools can scale back. Meanwhile, costs are kept down because the institution only pays for the resources it uses.
Of course, cloud capabilities were well-known before anyone even heard of COVID. But the swift shift to remote learning emphasized these services, pushing cloud to the forefront of both curriculum and budget planning. To meet an increased demand for remote access, education institutions need an agile, flexible, and scalable infrastructure only the cloud can enable.
Applications Inspire Powerful Connections Between Students & Teachers
Software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications such as education delivery platforms, student portals, collaboration tools, and more were highly in-demand during the pandemic. These tools granted the flexibility to work from anywhere, with any device. It enabled users to share files and collaborate with ease, from any location. Teachers were empowered to control the flow of information to students, ensuring a safe learning environment while keeping parents informed at all times.
SaaS also doesn’t lock schools into costly enterprise or perpetual licenses. Instead, SaaS lets institutions pay as they go, with the flexibility to add or remove users with the click of a button. There are also no maintenance or upgrades to fret over, as the cloud provider does it all.
Schools Can Thrive In The Cloud
Cloud-based technologies in educational institutions offer significant benefits. The model is explicitly designed to cater to the needs of a mobile-minded generation and convenience-driven students and staff. We’ve all grown incredibly accustomed to having a world’s worth of information at our fingertips. Cloud-based technologies streamline the gathering of that information, managing class assignments, collaboration, and guided learning.
As the pandemic has made clear, it's important to continue to learn about new technologies to ensure our students stay at the head of the class. And the cloud doesn’t only address hard-to-fathom occurrences like a pandemic, as the technology can also mitigate the effects associated with losing in-person days due to weather, natural disasters, and other unforeseen events.