This year we have suffered through a number of Blackboard (eCampus) system outages and a number of times where specific Blackboard functions were disabled by the vendor. Learning Management Systems are a core requirement for both online and face-to-face instruction, and the DCCCD places a high priority on these critical functions. I’d like to update you on some of the background regarding these issues:
- The district is operating on the current Blackboard Learn application, provided to us as a Software as a Service which is hosted by the company. We have maintained current patch and upgrade status and have licensed it fully for our student population and storage requirements
- We have experienced issues with the application, primarily due to the size of the district and the number of transactions during peak processing times. DCCCD is one of their largest customers, and issues we have had with our scale have not affected most of their customer base
- District leadership have escalated the issues to Blackboard’s most senior management
- As each incident has occurred, Blackboard has assigned dedicated teams to restore functionality. In some cases this has taken longer than we have expected
- Our technical staff continues to work with Blackboard to condition their environment for our needs, but this remains a challenge
- The district has adequate bandwidth for the service. The issues are embedded within the application software and database engine that Blackboard utilizes
Please bear with us as we continue to investigate the issues we have with Blackboard. The district has significant resources dedicated to the environment, and we are as frustrated as you are when they do not perform according to our requirements and expectations.