The top three things we learned at FETC

FETC 2013 LogoIn early February, the Lexmark industry education solutions team attended and showcased Lexmark solutions at the Florida Educational Technology Conference (FETC 2013) in Orlando, Fla. FETC 2013 is touted as one of the most comprehensive K-12 educational technology events in the nation, attended by educators and administrators from across the United States.

We asked Jeff Metze, industry manager for education at Lexmark, who attended the event with his team, to share with our blog readership the top three learning’s from the event.

Lexmark: What are some of the learnings that you culled together while attending FETC   Lexmark Booth at FETC 20132013?

Metze: What runs through my mind as the top word to describe FETC 2013 is mobile! Mobile was on everyone’s mind during the show and is everywhere in K-12 education. 2013 is the year for schools and districts to decide, what is our mobile strategy? Will we provide devices for a one-to-one environment or support a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) strategy? Will our current infrastructure support these devices? How will we manage content used on mobile devices?

Lexmark: It sounds like educators are at the point where they need to decide what devices they will use moving forward. I understand that some schools are mandating the move to digital devices?

Metze: Yes, and many schools and districts are still trying to figure this out – and that leads to the second thing we learned. Schools that are looking to move into the digital realm need to not only look at the devices that they will use, but also have the vision to see how they will utilize these devices down the road. What kind of mobile needs will their school/district have in the future? We think moving forward in 2014, they’ll have these devices and realize, ‘I need to create and manage content that is being produced on these devices. How am I going to do that? Where will the documents be digitally stored? How long do I have to keep these documents for records retention?’

Lexmark: What else did you learn at the show?

Metze: Along with the “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD) phenomenon, educators also need to be thinking about where and how students and teachers are going to print all these documents that are being managed on these digital devices. Paper usage in the classroom is not going to go away, but processes and paper flow can be streamlined. Finished paper documents will need to be delivered in some manner or fashion and that will require hard-copy output. Moving to a distributed environment where printers are close to the end-user and not in one central location is going to have to be determined and managed. You can’t have one copier or MFP for the entire school – what if that device goes down?  There is still going to be a need for the printed page, and Lexmark has mobile print applications and solutions to help our customers manage this.

For more information on how Lexmark can help you sort out your school or district’s mobile or BYOD blues, give us your feedback below or click here for more information on our education solutions at lexmark.com.