Printing restrictions for 11-12 school year

Q1.  What types of printing restrictions are available to schools?

a. Restriction by user:  we can restrict students only, staff only, or set restrictions for both.

b. By printer:  you may place restrictions on all printers or on only specific printers.

c. Restrict number of pages:  A common restriction is to set a maximum number of pages per print job –  for example, what is the maximum number of pages that a student or staff member should print on the local HP printers?  Should staff or students be printing 100 page documents at the local printers – or should they use the copiers/print shop?

d. Restrict multiple print jobs:  Many times, students accidently click print multiple times and then leave the extra copies at the printer. We can now restrict the printers to accept only one of the jobs and automatically delete the duplicate print jobs.

Q2. What is the purpose of these restrictions?
The purpose is not to stop printing – but to control/limit how much is available in order to control costs.  For example, by limiting the local printers to maximum number of pages, you will help re-direct larger printing to more cost effective options such as the print shop and the copiers.

Q3. Has anyone actually implemented this during the school year – and did they save money?
Yes.  Valley High School implemented printing restrictions in the spring of 2011 and had immediate cost savings.

Q4. Will the district be forcing schools/departments to use these restrictions?
No.  Each school and department is responsible for the cost of the ink/toner/paper that they use… therefore we believe the decision on printing restrictions belongs to the building/department that is paying for ink/toner/paper.

Q5. I’m interested in discussing the specific options and how that might apply to my location, how do I proceed? Who do I contact?
Email Brian Abeling….  He will connect you with one of the district technicians who help you review options and handle the implementation.

Q6. If we make the decision to implement some restrictions… what is our role/responsibility at the school?
Since the decision for setting the restrictions is yours – we will require you to email your staff (and copy the tech department) to notify them of what restrictions are being added and why.

Q7. Is it possible that this could be set up prior to school starting?  Yes.

Q8. Is there a cost for software? Set up, etc?
No cost at all…   we only need a few minutes of your time to sit down and discuss which restrictions are most appropriate for your location.

Q9. If things don’t work out, can the limits be changed?
Yes, the limits can be changed at any time, per printer or per user type (staff vs. students)

Q10. Do you have a sample letter/notice that other schools have used when they notified their staff?
Yes, here is a sample letter….

Staff, please not that when you return in the fall, the following changes will be made to our local printer setup in an attempt to save money.

Staff Limits:

  • Black/White: 20 pages, 20 copies, 3 minute wait between printing same document.
  • Color: 5 pages, 3 copies, 3 minute wait between printing same document

In addition, all staff computers will default to the Toshiba copier, not the team area printer. The team area printer will still appear in the print menu if you want to use it.

Students Limits:

  • Black/White: 5 pages, 2 copies, 3 minute wait between printing same document
  • Color: 2 pages, 1 copy, 3 minute wait between printing same document

This set of changes was made at Valley High School during the second semester and it appears to have saved them money as they under spent their toner cartridge budget.

Please keep in mind, if you are sending your printing to the appropriate places already, you won’t even notice there is a change.

What this change IS NOT:

  • This is NOT a move saying, “We don’t want anyone to print, so we’re going to clamp down on all printing!” or “We’re trying to make it harder for people to print.”  Of course we like to be “green,” but we recognize that printing is necessary in the school environment!
  • We are NOT removing the local printers from their current locations.
  • You should NOT feel guilty or have a problem with sending your small documents to the local printers; that is their purpose!

What this change IS:

  • An effort to remind everyone to drive high volume printing away from the local printers and, instead, over to the print shop or copier (preferably print shop!).  Of the three options, the local printers are the most expensive to send printing to.
  • The less we pay in toner for the HP printers…  The more cool tech stuff our building gets to buy!

As with any and all tech changes around <school name>, we are open to hearing your feedback.  Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns about this change.  This is the largest change to printing in the building, and so I’m sure there may be a few growing pains as we address issues on a case by case basis.

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