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A successful re-launch
Here in the US, we describe it as ‘the best Learning Management System hardly anyone has heard of over here’
Eric Moseley, Talbot County Public School
Talbot County Public School in Maryland, USA, has nearly 4600 students set over 9 campuses, going from Kindergarten to 12th grade (ages 5 to 19). Although they are in one of wealthiest counties, they also have the lowest per pupil expenditure of any school in the county. Nevertheless, they are one of very few schools to have nearly achieved a device to pupil ratio of 1:1. By the end of 2016, the aim is that every student will have full time access to a Macbook or Macbook Air device throughout their school years.
Eric Moseley, the school’s Instructional Technology Facilitator, is responsible for the implementation of Frog:
“The whole school has access to Frog with years 6-12 using it extensively. In particular, FrogPlay has proved unbelievably popular throughout the whole school but particularly with our middle and elementary classes.”
Talbot County Public School had been using StudyWiz, a learning management system developed in Australia, for about six or seven years:
“At the time it was the only K-12 solution on the market. Although the platform initially served our needs, there was substantial functionality missing, such as the ability to embed videos. At the same time, they were finding it increasingly difficult to meet our support needs and requirements here in the US, and their customer service let them down”.
Having established the need for a Learning Management System better suited to their needs, Eric Mosely embarked on more than a hundred hours of research, demonstrations, email follow ups and phone calls, before eventually finding Froglearn:
“Frog met the technical criteria. As a rural school with regular bandwidth issues, I was pleased that it was not a cloud based system. And Frog also seemed to be one of the only true K-12 solutions, rather than a K-9 to K-12 solution. Frog also passed the test when it came to formats: You could embed pretty much any video, audio or picture file type, and it seemed great for collaborative learning. We took Frog to a committee of ten teachers, together with four other systems, and all of them tried it out before making a decision. It was unanimous. ”
During the year that Frog was implemented, it took time to get the whole system embedded and to get everyone on board. But now in its second year, “usage has gone through the roof” and access is now at an average of 42,000 site visits, and more than 4,000 logins a day. Eric Mosely attributes this rapid growth down to Frog’s ease of use, and its customisation ability:
“Frog provides a glimpse of what an LMS should be”.
Frog proved its worth when Eric had to take over a Chemistry class, after their existing teacher left the school midway through the year:
“In all that class had lost several weeks of class teaching, and were at least a third of a year behind their peers. We used Frog extensively with them (178 hours in two weeks) and they ended the school year at the same level as the other classes.”
The best Learning Management System hardly anyone has heard of over here
Talbot County Public School has just signed up for a further 3 years, which Eric thinks says everything about their commitment to the system.
“We love that the system is being improved, and there are new innovations, all the time. Barely a month after we introduced Frog, our teachers had listed pages and pages of features that they wanted to see included. Eighteen months on, and they are all there! It is certainly something that we could not be without now. Here in the US, we describe it as ‘the best Learning Management System hardly anyone has heard of over here’.”