Makuhari International School by MicrosoftCaseStudies

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The Makuhari International School, located in Chiba Prefecture, Japan, is a school designed to give children a flexible and creative learning environment. Because the school views technology as being critical to its overall mission, it sought to find a new solution that would give instructors more flexibility and improve administrative efficiency. In April 2009, the school implemented technological elements of the Microsoft® Learning Gateway framework, including Microsoft Office SharePoint® Server 2007 and Microsoft SQL Server 2008. Makuhari International School can now give its instructors more flexible teaching capabilities and enhanced security. The school also has technology that it can build on to further enhance its learning capabilities.

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									                                                 Microsoft Education
                                                 Customer Solution Case Study




                                                 Japanese School Gives Teachers Flexibility,
                                                 Enhanced Security with New Framework



Overview                                         “Our teachers come from many countries . . . but they
Country or Region: Japan
Industry: Education                              all know Microsoft products. The choice was a given,
                                                 because of familiarity with the products and because of
Customer Profile
Makuhari International School, located in        compatibility with other software and systems.”
Makuhari, Chiba Prefecture, is an
                                                                       Paul Rogers, School Principal, Makuhari International School
international school for children. The
school improves English communication            The Makuhari International School, located in Chiba Prefecture,
skills and nurtures children who will be
able to function in an international
                                                 Japan, is a school designed to give children a flexible and
context.                                         creative learning environment. Because the school views
Business Situation
                                                 technology as being critical to its overall mission, it sought to
Makuhari International School wanted to          find a new solution that would give instructors more flexibility
find a new software solution that would
give its instructors more flexibility in their
                                                 and improve administrative efficiency. In April 2009, the school
teaching methods and also improve                implemented technological elements of the Microsoft® Learning
administrative efficiency.
                                                 Gateway framework, including Microsoft Office SharePoint®
Solution                                         Server 2007 and Microsoft SQL Server 2008. Makuhari
The school implemented several
components of the Microsoft® Learning
                                                 International School can now give its instructors more flexible
Gateway framework, including Microsoft           teaching capabilities and enhanced security. The school also has
Office SharePoint® Server 2007 and
Microsoft SQL Server® 2008.
                                                 technology that it can build on to further enhance its learning
                                                 capabilities.
Benefits
 Provides flexible teaching capabilities
 Enhances security
  Offers framework
 Enhances security for the future
 Offers framework for the future
Situation                                         1 of the School Education Act. Achieving
Makuhari International School, opened in          this status means that Makuhari
April 2009 in Makuhari, Chiba Prefecture,         International School can use its own
Japan, and is a school for children from          curriculum and can receive tax-free
kindergarten through elementary school. It        donations. However, this law also requires
provides English immersion education,             the school to regularly submit regulatory
along with Japanese language classes, to          documents to the Ministry of Education,
Japanese children, foreign children, and          Culture, Sports, Science and Technology,
children with dual nationality.                   and nearly twice as many of those
                                                  documents as an ordinary international
Makuhari International School is dedicated        school would have to submit. “For this
to providing students with a flexible and         reason, I considered the use of IT to be
creative curriculum. The school’s motto is        indispensable in improving the efficiency of
“Raising an Internationally Minded                administrative work,” says Takumi Inamoto,
Generation.” Makuhari acknowledges that           Business Manager, Makuhari International
each child is special and aims to bring out       School.
each child’s innate talents, thereby
cultivating adults who will make learning a       Beginning in April 2008, Makuhari
lifelong process and be able to work in           International School began to search for an
international contexts.                           IT system that would provide the solution
                                                  to the dual task of providing flexible classes
Technology is essential to the school’s           and improving work efficiency.
mission of providing a “flexible educational
curriculum dynamically adapted to each            Solution
child’s unique personality and                    In November 2008, Makuhari International
characteristics. “ Technology, in fact, plays a   School decided to implement technology
key role in stimulating the skills of the         components from the Microsoft® Learning
school’s children through intuitive and           Gateway framework. The Learning Gateway
flexible classes. For example, teachers use       is a solutions framework for Microsoft
large interactive whiteboard devices called       Office SharePoint® Server 2007, which
SMART Boards in classrooms. Each teacher          provides Web-based tools for building
creates his or her own teaching materials,        educational portals, managing content, and
which are displayed on the SMART Board.           supporting and enhancing collaboration.
Using PCs that log in automatically after
being switched on, students are able to           “Our teachers come from many countries,
connect wirelessly to file servers to answer      including Australia, Canada, New Zealand,
questions and exchange opinions with              and the United Kingdom, but they all know
classmates.                                       Microsoft products,” says Paul Rogers,
                                                  School Principal, Makuhari International
Classrooms, however, are not the only             School. “The choice was a given, because of
place where technology is needed at               familiarity with the products and because
Makuhari International School. An effective       of compatibility with other software and
IT system was also deemed necessary to            systems. An even more important
improving the efficiency of the school’s          consideration was the fact that the children
increasing administrative work, mainly            will most likely be using Microsoft products
because the school is the first international     away from the school whenever they use a
school in Japan to be recognized by Article       computer.”
                                           Because of its thorough knowledge of            flexible teaching capabilities and enhanced
                                           Microsoft products and solutions, and           security. The school also now has
                                           considerable experience with education          technology that it can build on for the
                                           systems, Microsoft partner Uchida Yoko Co.      future.
                                           was chosen to handle system development.
                                           “Our company handled installation of            Provides Flexible Teaching Capabilities
                                           everything from the PCs used by the             With the Microsoft Learning Gateway
                                           educators and students to the servers,” says    solution, Makuhari International School
                                           Hiroyuki Nomura, Manager of Large-Scale         instructors can now take advantage of new
                                           Systems Promotion Section, Service &            file-sharing capabilities to teach in a more
                                           Support Business Planning Department,           flexible way and be more productive
                                           Education Systems Division of Uchida Yoko.      administratively. In the new solution, one
                                           “Since the primary use for the servers was      file server is exclusively devoted to the
                                           account management and file                     students, and one file server is exclusively
                                           management, we proposed using the               devoted to the educators.
“With Microsoft Learning                   Learning Gateway framework as the core of

Gateway, a teacher can                     the portal function.”                           The folders used for this purpose are
                                                                                           managed in Office SharePoint Server 2007,
refer to another teacher’s                 The Learning Gateway solution                   and Active Directory is used to define the
                                           implemented at the school is powered by         relationship between teachers and the
ideas, add his or her own                  Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007         folders they can use. This makes it possible

ideas, and share the new                   and Microsoft SQL Server® 2008 Enterprise
                                           database management software. Together,
                                                                                           to assign which folders can be used by ID
                                                                                           permission level. “Each teacher has an ID,
ideas. This makes it                       these technologies permit the sharing of        and can store and share documents and
                                           information via school portal functions such    other files in the folders to which they have
possible to continuously                   as file sharing and bulletin boards.            been granted access,” says Nicholas Gunn,

polish and improve                         The solution’s first phase, which went
                                                                                           Vice Principal, Makuhari International
                                                                                           School. “With Microsoft Learning Gateway,
teaching materials.”                       online when the school opened in April          a teacher can refer to another teacher’s
                                           2009, saw the installation of secure user       ideas, add his or her own ideas, and share
 Nicholas Gunn, Vice Principal, Makuhari   account management functionality and file       the new ideas. This makes it possible to
                    International School
                                           management functionality, including the         continuously polish and improve teaching
                                           data collection function. In spite of a very    materials.”
                                           short timeframe, the system deployment
                                           went smoothly. “We built the file server and    In addition, file sharing between students
                                           installed Active Directory® service. There      helps promote creativity in the classroom.
                                           were no major problems, because the             “A teacher might divide students up into
                                           school had already given considerable           different groups, assign one group to work
                                           thought as to how to group tasks, carefully     on the SMART Board and another group to
                                           organizing folders and accounts according       work on their notebook PCs, and then ask
                                           to each task,” says Nomura. “This is what       each group to create a text,” says Gunn.
                                           made it possible to install the system so       “Thus, different data sources are being
                                           quickly.”                                       accessed by different means. This permits
                                                                                           students to learn by various methods,
                                           Benefits                                        approaches, and viewpoints, such as
                                           With its new solution in place, Makuhari        studying by comparing learning materials
                                           International School can give its instructors   from different grade levels.”
"Security for the entire                   Enhances Security                               out in both Japanese and English. We
                                           The new solution also gives Makuhari            would like to create and manage these
system is centrally                        International School enhanced security          documents in our new system
                                           capabilities. A wireless Local Area Network     electronically.”
managed, and backups                       (LAN) set up on campus can be accessed
and program updates                        from the management building,                   In the future, Makuhari International School
                                           kindergarten building, elementary school,       expects to be able to use technology to
are performed on a                         or the schoolyard. Wireless devices are         further enhance the school’s learning
                                           installed in the walls of each building, but    capabilities. “If we could use IT sufficiently
regular basis. For all of                  cannot be seen on the network. In addition,     well, the potential impact would be
these reasons, we are                      an Active Directory single sign-on function     incalculable,” says Rogers. “The only
                                           was implemented. “The security level of the     conceivable limitation would be the
confident that we have a                   network is very high, compared with public      teacher’s imagination. Overall, at the
                                           elementary and middle schools in Japan,”        present stage, only about 10 percent of the
very reliable system.”                     says Nomura.                                    real potential of IT is being realized. We will
   Akiyo Shibata, ICT Advisor, Makuhari                                                    strive to improve the skills of our entire
                    International School   Akiyo Shibata, ICT Advisor at Makuhari          staff so that they can use IT 100 percent. In
                                           International School, adds, “Prior to now,      turn, this will lay the foundation for a
                                           security was limited to security software       learning environment that will permit
                                           installed on individual PCs. Now, security is   children to further expand their potential.”
                                           more thorough, because we use proxies
                                           and firewalls. Security for the entire system
                                           is centrally managed, and backups and
                                           program updates are performed on a
                                           regular basis. For all of these reasons, we
                                           are confident that we have a very reliable
                                           system.”

                                           Offers Framework for the Future
                                           The system implemented at Makuhari
                                           International School has proven very
                                           effective to students, teachers, and
                                           administrative staff members. Although
                                           only a matter of months have passed since
                                           the system went online, the school has
                                           already come up with new ideas for system
                                           development, which are now being studied
                                           for implementation. “The urgent task is to
                                           establish a method for the online
                                           management of documents required by
                                           the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports,
                                           Science and Technology,” says Toshikatsu
                                           Nikko, Liaison Officer, Makuhari
                                           International School. “However, the
                                           administrative work of completing these
                                           forms is complicated by the fact that, unlike
                                           ordinary schools, the forms must be filled
For More Information                                  Microsoft Education
For more information about Microsoft                  Microsoft technology, programs, and
products and services, call the Microsoft             solutions can improve teaching and
Sales Information Center at (800) 426-                learning opportunities for instructors and
9400. In Canada, call the Microsoft                   students and make education
Canada Information Centre at (877) 568-               administration more successful.
2495. Customers in the United States and
Canada who are deaf or hard-of-hearing                For more information about Microsoft
can reach Microsoft text telephone                    Education please go to:
(TTY/TDD) services at (800) 892-5234.
Outside the 50 United States and                      www.microsoft.com/education
Canada, please contact your local                     www.microsoft.com/education/schools
Microsoft subsidiary. To access                       www.microsoft.com/education/highered
information using the World Wide Web,
go to:
www.microsoft.com

For more information about Uchida Yoko
Co. products and services, visit the Web
site at:
 www.uchida.co.jp/global

For more information about Makuhari
International School products and
services, visit the Web site at:
www.mis.ed.jp




                                                       Software and Services                     Technologies
                                                        Microsoft Office                         − Active Directory
                                                         − Microsoft Office SharePoint Server
                                                           2007                                 Partner
                                                        Microsoft Server Product Portfolio      Uchida Yoko Co.
                                                         − Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Enterprise




This case study is for informational purposes only.
MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR
IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY.

Document published October 2009

								
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