Diocese of Lincoln Schools — Lincoln, Nebraska
Education Technology Office
3700 Sheridan Blvd Ste 5
Lincoln, NE 68506
Msgr. John Perkinton — Superintendent of Schools
Dr. Matthew Hecker — Chief Administrative Officer
Ken Pinkerton — Sandhills Publishing — Education Technology Liaison
Sr. Mary Kansier, M.S. — Director of Education Technology - email
Sean McCleery — Student Information Systems Specialist
Mitch Corder — Field Support Specialist
Darren Furasek — Network Technician
Jason Garrett — Network Specialist
Brian Owens — Server Technician
Brad Seeman — Server Specialist
Shane Whitford — Training Specialist
Carrie Nielsen — Mobile Integration Specialist
Education Technology Initiative
When talking about technology, St. Maximillian Kolbe once said “good people need to use it for the glory of God.” It’s that idea of good people using good technology for the greater good that serves as one of the principles of the Lincoln Diocesan Technology Initiative.
The Education Technology Initiative started in 1996 through the generosity of longtime Lincoln residents Tom and Rhonda Peed. Since its founding, the initiative has worked to supply state-of-the-art technology to diocesan schools and institutions as a way to improve the education process, enhance curriculums, and assist teachers and school administrators throughout the Lincoln Diocese with their missions to provide students with an education that brings them closer to God.
The goal behind the technology initiative is to provide all diocesan schools with access to the same standardized technology and tools, rather than implementing programs and technologies that vary from one school to another. That’s no small undertaking, as the initiative currently works to support and supply more than 8,500 users throughout 32 Catholic schools in the Lincoln Diocese with desktop and laptop computers, servers, SMART Boards, and iPads and other tablet computers.
As part of the technology initiative, students have regular exposure to technology such as computer labs, keyboarding, library automation, and creative learning scenarios. Teachers and administrators each have their own laptop for use with electronic gradebooks and communication with parents through the ParentConnect portal. Since 2008, virtually every classroom has been equipped with a SMART Board, which has had a significant impact on education by engaging students in ways traditional presentations may not. Through use of the SMART Boards, students and teachers have access to the Internet and subscriptions to video and interactive lessons that offer a variety of resources for learning. Currently, there are 1:1 initiatives in two middle/high schools, grades 6-12.
One of the most well-received components of the Technology Initiative is teacher workshops. Over 30 training sessions are offered to teachers throughout the school year and during the summer, helping teachers incorporate technology into the curriculum. For several years, these sessions were hosted in a large hall set up as an ad-hoc classroom. In 2009, the Saint Maximilian Kolbe room was established as a permanent training center at the Blessed John XXII Center in Lincoln to host these training sessions. There are two staff members, dedicated to teacher training, available for on-site workshops in the school setting and who organize the summer trainings.
In addition to three team members dedicated to software support, there are seven full time team members dedicated to maintenance and deployment of hardware. The team is headed by Dr. Matthew Hecker, Schools Chief Administrative Officer; Ken Pinkerton, Sandhills Publishing - Education Technology Liaison; and Sr. Mary Kansier, Director of Technology.