Do public schools have room in their budgets for wireless screen mirroring technology?

15 January 2020 | By viviedu

For a lot of public schools, making the most of a limited budget is an ongoing challenge. 

The constant battle to find the funds required to source the latest equipment, resources and learning environments
can be a cause of ongoing frustration. 
Plus, 21st Century classrooms are now predominantly driven by technology and multimedia platforms designed to significantly improve student learning outcomes. Education technology (EdTech) has been used in classrooms for some time now, with significant advancements moving the technology beyond a simple one-dimensional presentation tool. These days, EdTech solutions include wireless screen mirroring, student interactivity, formative assessment, emergency broadcast and more. 

Yet, with public schools battling to balance the budget, classroom technology can often be the first to be compromised. This doesn’t have to be the case, however. 

A wireless screen mirroring solution can appear costly, but the benefits and long-term savings will far outweigh the initial spend. A good wireless solution should deliver savings by eliminating frequent repairs, replacements and purchases of damaged and missing HDMI cables and ports. 

In fact, some schools report that across 50+ classrooms, they send – on average – three to four cables a week for repair or to be replaced. Over the quieter holiday period they identify even more; at times finding anywhere between 15 – 20 broken cables that weren’t reported. This can amount to more than $3,000 per school year. 

In modern classrooms, using HDMI and AV cables is not only considered unproductive, it’s also outdated as many new devices no longer enable direct connectivity between HDMI and AV ports. This presents schools with another cost, having to purchase expensive USB-C adaptors that are also prone to inevitable deterioration. 

A teacher should be able to walk into a room and connect with no concerns about faulty equipment or sound issues. This eliminates time-wasting and frees up IT departments to focus on important tasks, without constant disruption. 

Introducing an intuitive wireless screen mirroring solution can also help achieve significant savings by negating the need to upgrade classroom displays. By opting to retrofit old monitors with screen-mirroring software instead of upgrading to more expensive interactive flat panels, schools can save hundreds of thousands of dollars in a school-wide rollout while creating equitable learning environments for all students. 

Public schools’ funding woes impact everyone from principals and heads of learning, through to students and teachers. In fact, US data indicates that teachers spend an average of nearly $500 a year on supplies. Although a Washington Post analysis suggest that figure is much higher.

So, if it’s near-impossible for staff at the grassroots level to battle the budget blues, what hope do decision-makers have when it comes to pricey technology purchases? The good news is, becoming a future-ready school can be done with a fiscally creative twist. 

In the US, there are foundations and corporations that provide sources of funding. GetEdFunding, for example, provides a database for hundreds of educational grants that may be just what you need. 

There are also EdTech vendors who operate on a subscription model with flexibility around payment arrangements. For example, your budget scenario may be better suited to make a one-off payment instead of recurring installments. In this case, an upfront payment may entitle you to a discount, too. 

And don’t forget, wireless solutions such as Vivi offer more than just screen mirroring. The technology covers the interests and buying needs of many departments within a school – from AV, student wellbeing, health and safety and digital signage – and thus enables savvy schools to be creative by drawing funding from applicable departments. 

While budget constraints can play a massive part in public schools’ decision-making, it need not be a deterrent when it comes to EdTech adoption. The key is finding a solution that will deliver a proven ROI and cater to a school’s multiple needs. 

Vivi’s classroom engagement solution does this by offering more than just a one-dimensional
screen presentation tool. Vivi also facilitates formative assessment, health and wellbeing checks; fast and reliable video streaming; digital signage; emergency broadcast and so much more. Its wireless technology saves schools thousands each year in broken and missing HDMI cables and cords and improves staff efficiencies, too. 

And because Vivi is purpose-built for classrooms, it is the only screen mirroring solution dedicated solely to improving education outcomes.