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Too much screen time has always been a concern. Blocksi wants to put you at ease.
Parents and teachers have long cautioned about the use of technology. But, the fear is no longer just about it “rotting children’s brains” or “not getting enough exercise.” When the pandemic shut down schools across the United States for most of 2020, it kicked the digital door wide open.
Remote classrooms were supposed to be temporary. It was an emergency measure to keep education moving. This type of instruction has been long perceived as supplemental. But, as the COVID-19 protections are slowly being rolled back, the online learning model remains entrenched.
This produces a whole new set of issues. Children must be glued to their devices not just for fun anymore, but also for school. Long hours in front of a screen still remains worrisome to parents. According to a Pew Research Center survey, 63 percent of K12 parents were concerned about too much screen time. This is the highest-rated problem amongst guardians whose children were only receiving online instruction.
Blocksi offers a solution.
Blocksi is a K12 web filter and classroom screen monitoring software designed to minimize screen time and online threats while maximizing the overall educational experience. Out of necessity, students are stuck in front of their monitors. With this innovative platform, teachers and parents can reassert control over what is being consumed.
Below are some FAQs on Blocksi and its role in the evolution of online learning.
Blocksi creates a platform for managing the digital needs of the modern classroom. Blocksi is a classroom screen monitoring software and K12 web filter. This powerful, cloud-based solution empowers parents, teachers, and administrators. At its core, it gives greater control of a child’s online content. Compatible with Chromebooks and Windows OS devices, Blocksi automatically filters websites, social media, and YouTube to meet K12 educational guidelines and demands.
From the Dashboard, Blocksi filters content collects analytics, and manages its student users. Inside the classroom, the software monitors screen time during in-person and virtual learning across all G Suite apps. Outside the classroom, it continues to set limits on what students experience while watching, browsing, or searching. It produces actionable data to detect trends, including cyberbullying and other harmful behaviors. Both parents and teachers benefit from these safeguards. For administrators, additional tools and reporting help align the entire district and proactively address issues.
Blocksi is non-proxy and hardware-free. Entirely cloud-based, Blocksi technology operates at the browser level, not at the network level. It functions with any Chromebook, Windows, Android platform and soon to come for Ipad and Mac devices through the existing G Suite for Education infrastructure. A Google domain, administrative user, and a Blocksi login are all that’s needed to get started.
According to a PwC report, only 10 percent of surveyed teachers feel secure in incorporating new, higher-level technology into classrooms. With this in mind, Blocksi presents an effortless experience for both teachers and parents. Most of the work is done on the backend. The K12 web filter is controllable from its easy-to-use Dashboard. If more help is needed, the Blocksi.net help page contains even more resources.
The view is different depending on the user. Administrators have access to raw data, trend analysis, reporting, and viewing habits. These can be broken down by the user and downloaded into PDFs. Location tracking minimizes devices being lost or stolen. For teachers, their Dashboard monitors every student’s screen to enforce and manage content in real-time. Blocksi supports remote learning as well. Parents are more aware of a school’s goals, even at home. Through the K12 web filter, they can limit streaming access and enforce time restrictions. The AI-powered file scanning can identify troubling or harmful behavior and notify through automated alerts.
Blocksi is a privately-held company. Its headquarters is located in Palo Alto, CA, in the heart of Silicon Valley. Fuad Bahou is the current CEO.
Blocksi was founded in 2011, with a mission to connect apps and software that enable people to exert more control over their Internet consumption. It balances this care for both students and devices with a low-cost product. Since it began, Blocksi has grown to nearly 50 employees.
Its highly-rated browser extension is free for Chrome. The K12 web filter works for school districts, home,s and businesses wanting to set online content and time boundaries. It filters across 79 different categories and YouTube. It uses safe search for text images and video with all major search engines. It also utilizes in-app control features.
The K12 web filter extension is free to download. But teachers, parents, principals and administrators must request a quote. Blocksi does offer a free, 30-day trial.
Blocksi is backed by some of the largest brands in this space. The company is a Microsoft Partner and a Google for Education Partner. This year, it was named a Lenovo Trusted Supplier. Blocksi is a valued partner and strong resource due to its online guides and tutorials. The Blocksi.net website stores how-to videos and walkthroughs, organized into groups. This makes it an easily implemented software for any user.
Blocksi pricing can vary depending on the size of the school district and the number of devices used. Parents, teachers, and education officials can try it for free for 30 days. After that, they will need to request a quote from one of the company’s customer service representatives. For personal use, the Blocksi router and home manager is $59.50 per year. This extends content-blocking protection to the entire family.
Any Chrome-supported client can run Blocksi. The extension will work on macOS and Windows Desktop, in addition to Chromebooks. Just make sure Chrome is installed and is the default browser. Blocksi also syncs with any G Suite application, including Gmail, Classroom, Docs, and Drive.
In remote learning classrooms, the camera can be used for audio-video conferencing. Entering this mode is safe and secure. If a device is lost or stolen, Blocksi actives a unique navigator that collects data, including location, screenshots, and camera images. These can be used in the recovery and return of the device.
On the Dashboard, teachers view student’s screen activity as thumbnails. When clicked, the display becomes full-screen with metrics from that class session. This up-to-date report includes any URLs or videos previously watched. Teachers can also see any tabs currently open. Classroom-specific filters can be applied and enforced for an individual student. Teachers can also take even more control and close out any unwanted websites, push tabs to the student’s browser, or completely pause the internet for a period of time. When taking a test or assessment, access to resources can also be restricted.
Blocksi is a trusted partner for Microsoft, Google, and Lenovo. To be endorsed by these industry leaders, the classroom screen monitoring software undergoes high levels of scrutiny. There is often a routine re-evaluation to make sure these standards are continuously met. With a simple download, Blocksi actually makes going online a safer experience for students. It gives category, keyword, video, and image filtering options. If a student displays a pattern of harmful language or behavior, Blocksi alerts adult users. These protocols ensure safety for all students using the software.
As the name implies, Blocksi Manager Education Everywhere (EE) offers four, linked Dashboards that are available anywhere, at any time. Because Blocksi Manager EE doesn’t use any hardware, administrators, teachers, parents, and delegates unite to construct a virtual screen monitoring platform for students that is entirely secure. At school or in the cloud, students will not face slow response times or errors. This integrated system is offered as a bundle package for school districts wanting to foster safe, online learning environments.
Available from the teacher dashboard, the message function is between a teacher and a student only. Students cannot message each other. A teacher can message an entire class, a specific set of students, or just one student individually. The chat bubble icon can be used as a direct message. This dialogue can continue, as needed. If “Message All” is selected, students will immediately see the message and can respond. The teacher will be notified by the blinking tile under the student’s name.TEACHER DASHBOARD FAQ