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The Pitch

The official student newspaper of Walter Johnson High School

The Pitch

The official student newspaper of Walter Johnson High School

The Pitch

MCPS to block GoGuardian funding for 2024-25 school year

GoGuardian+has+served+as+an+online+monitoring+helper+for+teachers.+Now%2C+without+the+classroom+tool%2C+questions+arise+as+to+how+the+change+will+affect+the+classrooms+%28Courtesy+GoGuardian+via+Wikimedia+Commons%29.+
Courtesy wikimedia commons
GoGuardian has served as an online monitoring helper for teachers. Now, without the classroom tool, questions arise as to how the change will affect the classrooms (Courtesy GoGuardian via Wikimedia Commons).

It’s time to say goodbye to “GoGuardian,” a tool used by teachers in classrooms to monitor student activity on their chromebooks. On Jan. 23, the MCPS Board of Education announced that GoGuardian will be pulled from the MCPS operating budget for the 2025 fiscal year.

This change was first publicly announced at a Board of Education budget work session on Jan. 23 by MCPS Chief of Strategic Initiatives Stephanie Sheron. Sheron cited that a low percentage of teachers are using GoGuardian this school year, and that the cost of paying for it is substantial, making it wasteful.

“We have about fifteen thousand teachers [in MCPS]. In this school year alone, [only] six thousand teachers use GoGuardian at least once,” Sheron said.

There is a divide amongst students and teachers as to whether or not the change is for the best. Some people stand by the decision, arguing for lots of other ways MCPS can spend the money. GoGuardian costs about $230,000 annually to be implemented in schools.

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Sophomore Mya Andriamalala is one of those agreeing with Sharon on the lack of use by teachers.

“Most teachers don’t use GoGuardian, and the money is going to waste. I feel that GoGuardian is an unnecessary addition to the budget of MCPS, and that MCPS could be doing a lot of other things with the money that’s being spent for GoGuardian,” Andriamala said.

Many in MCPS, specifically teachers, aren’t happy with the absence of GoGuardian in schools. There are concerns that students will be free to wander wherever they want on their chromebooks with the absence of a digital monitor.

“I really like that tool for teachers, because we have immediate information regarding what students are doing sometimes. It isn’t 100% accurate, but I think it’s still something we should be using,” Spanish teacher Samuel Alvarez-Garcia said.

With the announcement, there are questions on what that’ll mean for classrooms Including the possibility of an alternative to GoGuardian? Will MCPS go back to more “pre-GoGuardian” methods of student monitoring in the classrooms?

“My question right now is ‘ok they’re not paying for [GoGuardian] anymore, so are they going to buy a similar tool for teachers?’ I think MCPS should reconsider their decision,” Alvarez-Garcia said.

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Jeremy Silberglied, Staff Writer
Sophomore Jeremy Silberglied is thrilled to be in his first year with the Pitch as a Staff Writer. Jeremy is also his grade's class treasurer, and he loves playing sports in his free time.
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