HCPSS Introduces New Computer-Tracking Program


To better monitor students in the new hybrid model, a new monitoring program called Lightspeed has been implemented into HCPSS.
Lightspeed will allow teachers to directly view, direct, and lock a student’s computer to specific websites, as well as to close browser tabs and automatically navigate to websites. So far, this platform will only work on school issued Chromebooks and has been mostly used on elementary students for assistance. However, as the school year starts to transition into a hybrid model, high school students may be subjected to Lightspeed.
“I think if the teachers are going to have control, it would make sense for it to be used for the students to stay on task; [students] shouldn’t be doing things they shouldn’t,” junior Alex Joo said. ”I think there’s a fine line between monitoring and helping. There’s monitoring and hovering over everything you do and there’s helping them to get on task.”
However, the emergence of this monitoring tool has drawn criticism from some.
“I am in favor of student privacy if it’s reasonable. I don’t think teachers need to be hovering over student tabs. I think that’s violating student privacy. I think if you start this now, then everyone is going to lose trust. Teachers are going to lose trust in their students because they don’t trust them to do anything, and that will just create a lot more technology enforcement,” junior Ryan Lippe said.
Others argue that the loss of student privacy is outweighed by the educational benefits.
“For younger students, who are not as tech savvy as high schoolers [and who may] need help with their assignments, this would be a great benefit for them since the teacher would be able to assist them. And you could make students really pay attention, it’s definitely a problem online, it’s harder to avoid a teacher in an in-person class, but in a virtual classroom there’s more distractions,” sophomore Elinor Purves said. Being able to control screens during lessons can be an efficient way to make sure all students are on track. Still, other students take a more neutral position.
“For the younger students it would help them a lot, because they are still learning technology, but I’m against the use for high school students. Only if [a teacher] has actual evidence that the student is being off task should be an individual monitoring. Like, if a student is blasting music in a chat, then there should be consequences,” junior Alex Choi said.
Since the world has become increasingly reliant on virtual solutions, students can only expect more technology to be added into schools.