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How Nashua School District Helps 11,000+ Students with Deledao 

District: Nashua School District

 

Location: New Hampshire

 

Grade Levels: K-12

 

Total Student Population: 11,000+

Devices: Windows devices, Chromebooks

The Challenge

A few years ago, the second largest school district in New Hampshire, Nashua School District, needed a new content filter solution to stay CIPA-compliant and eligible for E-Rate funding from the federal government.

"As a district with over 11,000 students, we wanted a few things. One, a content filter that finally works on our Windows devices, not just Chromebooks. Second, a solution that works off campus for distance learning," said Greg Rodriguez, the Director of Technology at Nashua.  

 

While Nashua required a solution that could handle its size, Greg didn't want a clunky corporate solution repurposed for education. Greg headed to his regional EdTech conference, MassCUE, to look for an innovative solution.   

Finding a solution

Fortunately, he found Deledao and opened his eyes to the possibilities of using multi-layered, real-time AI technologies to keep students on task and on target for success.  

Greg walked into a MassCUE session on real-time AI filtering presented by Deledao. He met the CEO of Deledao, Shuang Ji, and a Deledao customer in the neighboring state of Massachusetts.  

 

Greg was pleasantly surprised that he was talking to a fellow IT person that genuinely cared for students instead of a generic salesperson. He learned that Shuang is the co-inventor of proxy filtering technology that is the basis of all web filtering today.  

Living in Silicon Valley, Shuang and his friends see their children grow up in a very different environment than the one they grew up in. Schools were handing out Chromebooks and iPads to children everywhere. Teachers often preferred digital resources over textbooks. Students were now required to do certain homework online.

 

He worried that the technology he developed in the 1990s could not adequately protect his school-aged daughter on the modern web.

 

Websites no longer belong to a single, static category. Many websites, especially social media, contain user-generated content that conventional web filters cannot accurately categorize.  

 

It is impossible for conventional web filters, also called legacy filters, to accurately categorize new content because they rely on technology from the 1990s. All legacy filters require tedious manual maintenance of allowlists and blocklists, which overwhelms already busy K12 IT teams.

​Furthermore, the legacy filter that Greg was using did not work on the thousands of district-owned Windows devices. It also had two separate components, a hardware device for on-campus filtering and a cloud-based offering for off-campus filtering. Each component was a separate cost that Greg had to figure out how to fit into his budget.  
 

The demo of the Deledao AI filter, ActiveScan™, that Greg saw at MassCUE impressed him.  
 

Because Deledao is cloud-based and works seamlessly on and off campus, Greg would only have to pay for one solution without worrying about compatibility between different technology products. Even when students take devices home, Nashua could comply with CIPA requirements to stay eligible for much-needed federal E-Rate funding.   

 

Besides Deledao, none of the competitors talked about how real-time AI technology can solve the problems at Nashua.   

 

Unlike legacy filters that block or allow websites based on domain names or keywords, Deledao ActiveScan™ uses three layers of real-time AI engines to combat digital distractions:  

  • InstantAI™ reads through text by understanding context and sentiment like a human  

  • MediaMonitor™ reviews images and videos in real time to blur inappropriate media  

  • GameChanger™ detects mouse and keyboard patterns of users playing games  

​If Nashua used Deledao to automate blocking and redirecting students back to their curriculum, then Greg's busy IT staff could focus on higher-impact activities.   

 

Excited to try it out for himself, Greg agreed to a pilot. Once he put real students on the pilot, he was sold.   

 

Research shows that it takes up to 30 minutes for students to refocus after they get distracted (Chen, Nath & Tang, 2020). Deledao turns online classrooms into digital distraction-free learning environments.  

 

The Deledao solution typically removes at least 60% more digital distractions than other leading content filters in head-to-head comparisons. A study of 1,000+ students shows that Deledao may even improve student self-regulation skills to stay on task without help after just four weeks (Deledao Pilot Case Study, 2023).   

Greg Rodriguez - Nashua NH - Headshot.jpeg
"Students are frustrated that they don't get to go where they want to go, but Deledao is taking them where they need to be. Students are finally working on their assignments like they should be."  

Greg Rodriguez

Director of Technology

Nashua School District

Since a major pain point for Greg was the inability of his legacy filter to operate on the thousands of Windows devices owned by his school district, Greg was eager to test Deledao on these devices.  

 

With the help of the Deledao support and product teams, Greg finally got a content filter to work on his Windows devices in the unique technology environment at Nashua.
 

The previous solutions Greg used or explored would tell him that there's nothing the company can do to fix the Windows problem. But Deledao was agile enough to take feedback from his IT team to create a product that better serves its customers.  

After the pilot ended, it was a no-brainer for Greg to purchase Deledao. Nashua has been with Deledao ever since distance learning days were the norm.  

"You feel like Deledao truly listens to your feedback.
I feel 100% of their high customer service
even years after the initial purchase." 

Greg Rodriguez
Director of Technology
Nashua School District

In addition to providing Greg with a solution built specifically for K12, Deledao provides Nashua with peace of mind regarding student data privacy. New Hampshire is one of the leading states in safeguarding student data and has stricter requirements than many other states, so Greg has to do his due diligence in selecting EdTech vendors. 
 

Deledao was built with a focus on user privacy from the beginning.   
 

The Deledao approach to data privacy is to collect only necessary personally identifiable information (PII) from students, take multi-layered measures to keep that data secure, and only use that data to provide the agreed services. PII is never sold or rented to others.  
 

Deledao is compliant with all federal and state laws regulating student data privacy, such as FERPA and COPPA. Beyond compliance, Deledao signed the latest Student Privacy Pledge created by the Future of Privacy Forum (FPF) and The Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA).   

Deledao also helped non-IT departments at Nashua with its AI-powered student wellness detection product, ActivePulse™.  

 

ActivePulse™ uses the same groundbreaking InstantAI™ technology as ActiveScan™ to monitor for signs of student mental distress. If students are at risk of harming themselves or others, then ActivePulse™ will flag that activity in real time and immediately alert schools or parents.   

 
The principals, teachers, and school resource officers have never seen an AI-powered mental health solution like ActivePulse™ before. With Deledao, schools can investigate potential problems early and get students the help they need before it's too late.   

"This goes beyond content filtering.
Deledao helps save student lives with
its preventative tool for student wellness.
School interventions are no longer guesswork
but using real-time data."

Greg Rodriguez
Director of Technology
Nashua School District

Seeing how happy his district is with the Deledao solutions, Greg had to try the classroom management product, ActiveInstruct™, when Deledao released it. He now has a portion of Nashua teachers using ActiveInstruct™ to streamline their management of increasingly digital classrooms. Greg is considering a full rollout once the district is ready. 

The Result

From an impressive first meeting at MassCUE, Nashua School District soon chose Deledao as an EdTech partner to help the district's 11,000+ students succeed in a digital environment.  

Along with content filtering, the full lineup of AI-powered K12 solutions by Deledao has been offering value to the IT team, principals, teachers, and school resource officers at Nashua for years. 
 

"Deledao is part of the district now, not just the IT department," said Greg.   
 

Designated school administrators are monitoring the mental health of students spending time online, and teachers are managing their classrooms without feeling like digital hall monitors. 

"Deledao delivered on all its promises and more.
It's probably the best thing we bought that year."

Greg Rodriguez
Director of Technology
Nashua School District

Want to see the results for yourself?

Fill out the form and get the chance to run a pilot program with us!

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