By Plamena Quintavalla, Bronxville School Reporter for Syntax
Apr. 26, 2017: Thirteen Bronxville High School teen technicians who are equipped to support the entire school district and assist their peers and teachers in resolving a wide range of technology issues as members of the Student Help Desk are now certified as Google Educators Level 1.
After receiving formal training and passing a rigorous task-based exam to demonstrate their levels of mastery on the Google platform, they became the first students in the region to obtain the certification, which is usually completed by teachers and technology leaders. Director of Technology Jennifer Forsberg said that the students are well-versed in the Google suite of applications, including Gmail and Google Classroom.
"Our goal was to provide students with opportunities where they can acquire extra skills and apply them when assisting staff members in their capacity as Student Help Desk members or beyond," said Forsberg, who holds certifications as a Google Trainer and Google Administrator. "Our hope is that they inspire others to pursue their passions and interests and also inspire them to think outside the box when it comes to learning."
In addition to the students, instructional technology specialist Brad Ashley also became a Google Certified Educator Level 1. Forsberg said that the district may offer additional certifications for students in the future, including certifications offered by Apple.
Currently, thirteen students are members of the Student Help Desk, a program in its second year that is offered as a full-time course. Through the program, the students are able to investigate a new educational topic each week, explore new interests, and participate in troubleshooting throughout the district. They also maintain a Twitter account and blog on a number of computer science topics.
In addition, those who participated in the program last year but were unable to fit the course into their schedules this year are still able to participate by attending meetings and working on independent projects of their choice centered on the topic of technology.
Forsberg said that the Student Help Desk program is designed to engage students in different aspects of technology and encourage them to be leaders and innovators in their school and greater community, which are skills closely aligned with the dispositions of the Bronxville Promise. They are also able to enhance their collaboration and leadership skills and think critically when walking into a classroom to solve a problem.
For more information on the Student Help Desk, visit www.bxvshd.wordpress.com and follow the student-technicians on Twitter at www.twitter.com/bxvhelpdesk.
Pictured here: Members of the Bronxville School Student Help Desk certified as Google Educators Level 1.
Photo courtesy of The Bronxville School