Technology Support for Home Learning Coaches
Stay connected with our many digital tools to support digital learning!
All PISD students enrolled in the Virtual Academy will need a computer with Internet access. PISD Chromebooks are the preferred device for student use.
Chromebooks provide a seamless connection to online apps and resources such as online textbooks, Dreambox, and other online materials. Also, PISD Chromebooks sync with GoGuardian and can be managed by teachers and parents. Chromebooks are the devices used in PISD classrooms so students learning virtually can remain consistent with campus technology.
How do I get a Chromebook?
Parents can request to check out a Chromebook via Parent Portal. It is important to read through the Student Technology Equipment Checkout Guidelines first.
If using a personal device, please note the following:
- The device should have Google Chrome installed. (Instructions below in the section titled Google Chrome.)
- Students should sign-in to the Google Chrome browser and use it each day to access PISD apps and materials. (Instructions below in the section titled Google Chrome.)
- Students should access Webdesk to launch apps and other materials. (Instructions below in the section titled Webdesk.)
- Please note that personal devices cannot sync to GoGuardian.
Know Your Username and Password
All PISD students have been issued a username and password to access an array of digital tools and content. Their username is the student's firstname.lastname.# (example: becca.smith.2). If students have forgotten their usernme and/or password or are otherwise experiencing problems trying to sign-in, please contact Plano ISD's Technology Help Desk for assistance:
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org - Please provide a call back phone number in your email.
The student email address is their email@example.com (firstname.lastname@example.org). Example: email@example.com. If a student is using a PISD Chromebook, they'll be automatically be signed-in to Chrome with their email address automatically. If a student is using a personal desktop/laptop computer, they will be prompted to enter their email address to sign-in. (Instructions for installing and signing-in to Google Chrome are below.) All students have email addresses to gain access to apps, but only students in grades 6-12 are able to send and receive messages.
The recommended browser for PISD apps and resources is Google Chrome. Students should sign-in to Google Chrome using their PISD username/password to streamline the asynchronous learning process. PISD Chromebooks already have Google Chrome installed. A personal desktop/laptop can install Google Chrome with the instructions linked below.
How to Install Google Chrome Browser
How to Sign-In to Google Chrome
PISD Digital Learning Team Video on Google Chrome - Installing and Signing In
Why use Chrome?
- The Chrome browser is a Google product, so all Google apps and components connect automatically and work better in Chrome.
- When you sign-in to the Chrome browser, Chrome syncs across all your devices. You always have your preferred settings, saved features, favorite websites, and browsing history - wherever you log in.
- Sites with the "Sign-in with Google" button will pull your PISD credentials from the Chrome browser, making the sign-in process even easier.
PISD Webdesk and MyBackpack
What is Webdesk?
Webdesk is PISD's portal which provides the easist way to access many digital learning resources. All students have an app in Webdesk called MyBackpack which provides quick access to apps and course resources including electronic textbooks, curriculum-based software, and many other apps. Webdesk streamlines the login process for students.
How does a student sign-in?
A PISD Chromebook is the fastest and easiest way to sign-in to Webdesk. Signing-in on a PISD Chromebook will automatically launch Webdesk and will automatically sign-in the student. On a personal desktop/laptop computer, a student will need to sign-in to Chrome with their PISD email address and password, then navigate to webdesk.pisd.edu, then enter their username/password to sign-in to Webdesk. Instructions below:
- Sign-In to Webdesk - PDF document with steps for signing in | YouTube video demonstrating the steps for signing in
- Webdesk App for Phones/Tablets - Webdesk is available via app, too! It's free for iOS or Android. Please search for Plano ISD after installing the app. Choose to sign in with ADFS then enter the student's PISD Username and Password.
- MyBackpack - All course-related resources are stored in one spot! Look for the MyBackpack tile in Webdesk.
- Teacher Console - Teachers can easily "push" apps to students' MyBackpack via Teacher Console.
- Accessing H: Drive - Files stored on the PISD Network, such as the H: Drive, can be accessed via Webdesk.
- Webdesk Resources - A collection of YouTube videos to demonstrating ways to use Webdesk | The PISD Webdesk resource page
If you are experiencing access issues with PISD digital tools, please review the troubleshooting steps below.
Cannot Sign-In on Chromebook or Webdesk
If students have forgotten their username and/or password or are otherwise experiencing problems trying to sign-in on a Chromebook or Webdesk, please contact Plano ISD's Technology Help Desk for assistance:
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Please include a call back phone number in your email.
Cannot Access Online Apps or Electronic Textbooks/ Apps in Webdesk Have Sign-In Errors
- Verifying a Webdesk password will usually clear up these issue. Please work with your student to go through the steps listed here to verify their Webdesk password.
- Connect your Google Account in Webdesk to streamline the sign-in process for apps that use Google sign-in.
- Make sure you are accessing the apps assigned to the student via MyBackpack. Webdesk has many apps available for installation. PISD has created our own apps for Webdesk (usually with PISD in the title) to make access even easier for user. Please make sure you are using a PISD app.
- If using a personal device, please make sure the user is signed-in to the Chrome browser.
- On a personal desktop/laptop computer, if prompted, please make sure to install the Webdesk Extension in Google Chrome.
- Check for Chrome updates on a Chromebook - watch video here
- Click the digital clock on the bottom right of your Chromebook screen.
- A menu will pop up. Select the Settings gear.
- A settings page will pop up. Scroll down to see About Chrome OS on the left panel menu.
- Click CHECK FOR UPDATES.
- Restart the Chromebook.
- Restart your Chromebook so that it runs updates
- Clear your cache:
- Click the three vertical dots on the top right of the browser toolbar to open the Chrome menu.
- A menu will drop down. Select More tools.
- A menu will appear. Select Clear Browsing Data.
- Check the boxes next to "Cookies and other site data" and "Cached images and files."
- Click the Clear data button. The Chromebook cache and cookies and now deleted.
- Remove any unnecessary Chrome extensions
- Right-click the extension and select "Remove from Chrome"
- Or follow the directions on pisd.edu/chrome for more details