Wednesday, May 2, 2012

(HYPERBOLE ALERT) "Pandoragate" Rocks BHS

Being in a school that allows access to most web-based resources is certainly a huge benefit to being a staff member or student at BHS. Unfortunately, we take for granted that our internet has a saturation point that can cause things to bog down for users if we are using too many applications that stream video and/or audio. So yesterday, there was a decision made by our tech folks that took Pandora off the table (at least temporarily).

 As soon as this happened a steady stream of tweets hit the #bhschat hashtag (check some of them out below) asking what hat happened and pleading for Pandora's return. The decision to block Pandora is not to limit access or to punish anyone for something that someone did wrong. The reason we are now blocking the popular music site (as our System Administrator Bob Cunha explains above) is to free up internet access for staff members in other schools who all get their access from the servers at BHS. This should be rectified next year when a new line goes live at Marshall Simonds Middle School.


  1. Patrick,

    I like the way that you handled this situation; providing information without getting caught up in the "drama". I also really like your clear explanation to the students about why access to Pandora needed to be blocked, specifically that it wasn't because anyone was doing anything "wrong". It's really about making an informed choice about how to use and allocate a key resource, in this case internet bandwidth. As too many of us in schools know, internet bandwidth is not unlimited (at least not yet). This really legitimizes the use of a filter as tool that can be used thoughtfully when necessary.

    I also like how you included your Systems Administrator in the explanation so that he could explain the troubleshooting process and why the decision was made. It does a good job showing that these types of decisions are not (and should not) be made arbitrarily. As a district "tech guy", I would have liked to see a little more outward support for the system administrator in the video, but that's just nitpicking ;)

  2. Thanks for taking the time to comment Paul. Our System Admin. is the best! I could have said the same thing (after he explained it to me), but I thought it was a good opportunity to get it from the source.