Monitor Monsters

Mrs. Connell monitoring her students screens.

Veronica Peterson, Crown Writer and Photographer

A new school year, some new students, and one important new program. School starting also comes with big changes, just like the new program that monitors students’ laptops. What does the program exactly do? Students know it allows teachers to see what they are viewing on the laptops, but they want more information. 

The infamous monitoring program is called Dyknow. The Dyknow software shows teachers what students are looking at while they’re in that teacher’s class. From the teachers’ point of view, they see a small version of their students’ screen and it shows what every student is doing on their laptop. Teachers can click on specific screens to see what that certain teen is doing as well. “I can see whether or not people are paying attention,” said Mr. Lalor. Then if the student isn’t doing what they should be doing, teachers like Mr. Lalor may send them a message or even block the website they are on. Teachers are able to block whatever website they would like, but only if it is for the current class period. Despite all of this newfound responsibility and power that is given to the teachers, some students are still curious about why.

So why was Dyknow added to the Marian community? How was this new program decided upon? Was Dyknow the best choice for Marian and its students? “There was a lot of off-task behavior.” said, Mrs. Novy. Since students were getting off-topic and not paying attention in class, some teachers started to not use the technology in class at all. “We tried different options,” said Ms. Dietz, who had problems with students messing around during lessons. Over an evaluation period, the staff tried three different programs in total, but Dyknow was the easiest and best program to use. 

Overall, Dyknow seems to have made a positive change in both the staff and students. It helps the students stay attentive in class and hopefully help them to be more productive. This program also allows the teachers to stop worrying as much about their students. All in all the new computer monitoring isn’t a monster at all.