Maricopa County, Ariz.
The Maricopa County Head Start and Early Head Start Program has fifty-one (51) classrooms located in community-based organizations and school district sites and are geographically spread throughout eastern Maricopa County. In addition, many program staff provide services in community-based locations and in clients’ homes. As a result of this non-centralized workforce, program staff did not have consistent, direct access to the County network. This prohibited staff from accessing Departmental and programmatic documents or from accessing the County intranet. The large number of classrooms also presented an issue for information technology support. With all issues being localized, this required information technology support staff to travel throughout the County to diagnose and correct problems as well as ensure updated software and security. These issues prompted the development of the Head Start and Early Head Start Program virtualization. This virtualization was focused around the implementation of the Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI). This would allow program staff to securely access their desktop and network resources from any device, anytime they need, anywhere with an internet connection. In addition, this virtualization would enable program staff to become more mobile, and provide more services to clients’ in a community setting. With the installation of hardware and software components, the purpose of the virtualization was not only fully achieved but cost savings was realized as well. Virtualization created efficiencies and effectiveness for both program staff and supporting information technology staff as well. By The Maricopa Head Start and Early Head Start Program Virtualization not only improved the working conditions for the staff but also improved the administration of the Head Start and Early Head Start program for the children and families served in the County’s service area.
Ms. Jacqueline Edwards