Putnam City Schools Leverages Technology to Ignite a Passion for Learning

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Putnam City Schools in Oklahoma City is leveraging technology to achieve the school’s mission of providing a transformative experience that ignites a passion for learning.

“Technology is a key component of providing our students the best products that will help spur innovation and help enable that transformative experience,” Cory Boggs, Chief Information Technology Officer, said. “The technology that we put in the hands of our students allows them to create high-quality projects, engage in interactive learning activities, and have the flexibility they need on-demand.”

The school district has an interesting history. Israel Mercer Putnam owned 2,000 acres of land that he envisioned as a city close to Oklahoma City, but with a suburban atmosphere. This city would host a new State Capitol. His vision didn’t become a reality, but the area was named Putnam City, and a group of parents established the school district in May 1914.

Today, the district includes 27 schools with 19,000 students and 2,500 employees. The district serves 47 square miles in the metropolitan area. It serves a diverse student population with 72 languages spoken. The district also provides the community with an alternative school and a virtual school option.

Learning Initiatives

Students at Putnam City Schools Using TabletsTechnology plays an important role in serving this diverse student group. The district has a 1:1 initiative, providing all students with an iPad and all teachers with a MacBook.

“The district is focused on project-based learning and providing real-time resources readily at the fingertips across our diverse population,” Boggs said.

The district strives to offer students a variety of unique programs, from animation and digital design to aviation, Internet of Things, cybersecurity, video production and sports broadcasting. The school’s technology initiatives and high-speed connectivity help make these programs possible.

“We are able to bring in experts via video conferencing, virtual field trips, and prepare for up-and-coming new technologies, such as virtual reality, that will continue to grow in the coming years,” Boggs said.

Upgrading to 30G

Boggs said upcoming big changes like augmented and virtual reality require a lot of throughput and quick response times. The district recently upgraded to a 30G internet connection with OneNet to support these changes.

“New technologies require more and more bandwidth as more data are stored and processed in the cloud,” Boggs said. “We strive to always stay ahead of the demand and to maintain modern infrastructure.”

The district’s need for additional bandwidth grows every year. Boggs’ team prepares in advance to put the resources in place to prevent potential bottlenecks. In addition, the team must ensure that every student has the resources they need to succeed.

“Many of our students do not have high-speed internet access at home, so we need to provide these educational experiences using the technologies while they are at school,” Boggs said.

Working with OneNet

Putnam City Schools Student Using TabletPutnam City Schools has been a OneNet subscriber since 1998. The district started with a 100Mbps circuit, upgrading steadily over the years to its new 30G capacity for 2024. This bandwidth growth has enabled the district to provide fast reliable service to students and staff.

The district chooses OneNet for internet service for several reasons, including OneNet’s reliable service, customer support and network services.

“OneNet has continued to provide excellent customer support, near 100% uptime, and offers great benefits through additional services such as managed firewall and DDoS protection,” Boggs said.

The district technology department has also enjoyed working with OneNet’s team of technical staff.

“We have found that OneNet has a top-notch staff who are highly knowledgeable and happy to assist us with any issues or questions as they arise,” Boggs said.

“Putnam City Schools is a great example of why high-speed connectivity is so vital to serving our state’s students, who come from many diverse backgrounds,” said John Hennessey, Associate Vice Chancellor for Information Technology and OneNet. “OneNet strives to keep up with the growing demand for bandwidth from K-12 schools across the state, like Putnam City.”

“As Oklahoma’s research and education network, we are proud to be the state’s partner in education and support the requirements of our schools’ changing technology needs.”

Read how Berryhill Public Schools, a Tulsa metro area district, utilizes high-speed connectivity to keep teaching routines on track.

Images courtesy of Putnam City Schools

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