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Subject: Re: Palm Pilot, Pocket PC
From: Robin Tew <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Records Management Program <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Fri, 2 Nov 2001 07:40:09 -0500

text/plain (156 lines)


This is an article from the St. Pete Times.  I tried to email the story
using the newspaper's web site, but it didn't work.  This is a little
different context than you mentioned, but still might be of interest.

Robin Tew
Supervisor, Records Management
Pinellas County (FL) Schools

Handy device rats on roaming students
School administrators are using hand-held computers to keep students in
line. Some students aren't so sure they like that idea.

 St. Petersburg Times, published October 12, 2001

School administrators are using hand-held computers to keep students in
line. Some students aren't so sure they like that idea.
CLEARWATER -- Brittney Wier skipped class at Clearwater High School a few
weeks ago simply because she didn't want to go.

She might have gotten away with it if the school resource officer hadn't
seen her step out of a boy's restroom, where she sought refuge when she saw
him walking her way.

"What are you doing in there?" asked Robert Kinchen, pulling his Palm
hand-held computer from his shirt pocket.

"What is that?" Brittney asked.

Without answering her, he scrolled down to her name, tapped on it with a
stylus and watched as her class schedule popped onto the screen.

Fourteen-year-old Brittney was supposed to be in English class.

She was stunned the little device tattled on her. Kinchen, on the other
hand, was thankful for the extra help.

"I don't know how we got along without them before," he said.

It has taken a while, but school administrators have caught up in the
technology game. High schools across the county have been arming principals,
assistant principals and school resource officers with hand-held computers
filled with student names, addresses, telephone numbers and class schedules.

"It's an extension of our office," said Kevin Gordon, an assistant principal
at Clearwater High. "Instead of using a walkie-talkie and telling someone to
find it, we have instant access in our hands."

For $360 a device, Clearwater administrators say they have been conducting
their jobs more efficiently for more than a year. If a student has a seizure
in class, administrators are just a few clicks away from getting his
mother's phone number. They also can be used to locate students quickly,
take roll after a fire evacuation and to identify students involved in bus
and car accidents.

At least four Pinellas high schools use the devices. Dixie Hollins in St.
Petersburg hopes to join the list next week. Assistant principal Sadie Reed
said she is looking forward to halls free of students and "creating a school
that is safe for learning."

Pinellas high school principals first learned the technology was available
when a company approached them with the idea two years ago, said Al
Swinyard, assistant superintendent of management information systems.

That hand-held computer was nice but expensive. Soon administrators talked
about ways they could achieve the same results for less money. It turned out
Palms could be used to download school files at about about half the cost of
the other hand-held computer, Swinyard said.

Principal John H. Nicely was tickled by students' reactions to his Palm at
Tarpon Springs High School last fall. He found students roaming the halls,
asked for their names and and pulled out a flat rectangle.

What are you going to do to me?

You're supposed to be in Mrs. Smith's class.

How did you know that?

We have it right here.

Needless to say, some students don't like the technology twist.

At Clearwater High, more than two dozen students said they didn't know the
administrators had the device. Others were dubious and wanted proof. One
thing was for sure. They didn't like what they were hearing.

"That's not cool," said Stephen Goodrow, a 17-year-old Clearwater senior.

They also feared their information would get into the wrong hands if the
tiny computer was lost.

"We have security software," said Keith Mastorides, assistant principal at
Palm Harbor University High School. "If stolen or lost, no one would be able
to open them up and get the information out of them."

Most students conceded they couldn't find fault with the effort to keep
better tabs on them. Several even said it was a good idea.

"They are less likely to lie to us," said Julie Janssen, principal at
Countryside High School in Clearwater.

Brittney can attest to that. She said she is "more scared" to cut class and
hasn't since her run-in with the school resource officer.


>From: "Alan S. Zaben" <[log in to unmask]>
>Reply-To: Records Management Program <[log in to unmask]>
>To: [log in to unmask]
>Subject: Palm Pilot, Pocket PC
>Date: Wed, 31 Oct 2001 18:43:30 -0500
>This is for any of you fellow propeller-heads out there.
>I am investigating the potential use of a Palm Pilot/Pocket PC type device
>by my company and would appreciate any thoughts or comments realtive to
>ease of use by end-users, programming, application development, etc.  Our
>intention is to use them to collect data and then download the data to a
>desktop computer for processing, analysis, and reporting.
>"A Cancer Survivor"
>Edison, New Jersey
>[log in to unmask]
>Cancer may have robbed me of that blissful ignorance that once lead
>me to believe that tomorrow stretched forever.  In exchange I've been
>granted the wisdom to see each today as something precious, a gift to
>be used wisely and fully.  Nothing can take that away.
>Hopes and dreams reign where cancer cannot go.
>List archives at
>Contact [log in to unmask] for assistance

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