Chromebook purchase requires responsibility


Technology has invaded the high school The entire district, actually. With all staff and students in grades 8-12 receiving new Chromebooks at $280 a pop, and grades 3-7 receiving classroom sets, this is by far the single most expensive technology purchase the district has made. Big bucks, but worth it in the long run; the Chromebooks are already changing the way that teachers teach and students learn, incorporating technology into almost every lesson. The Chromebooks are an excellent addition to the learning process. They will allow the students to be more productive in class. Also, the use of the computers will help keep the students organized, so losing and not turning in papers shouldn’t be a problem. Using the chromebooks for almost everything will also limit the amount of paper being used.

There is a responsibility involved, too. Students are responsible for keeping up with their Chromebooks and making sure they aren’t broken or stolen. Already, there have been students who left theirs in a backpack in the hall and came back to find that someone kicked it or stepped on it and broke the screen. The cost of such a mistake is high; even with the $25 insurance, a broken screen has a $50 deductible. Students have to be serious about taking care of the equipment.

Then there’s how much bandwidth we are using. With just more than 300 people potentially using their Chromebooks at once, keeping the WiFi up and running is a chore. When students are also logging onto the WiFi with their phones and then play games or stream movies or music during school hours, the system becomes overloaded. Students needs to be respectful of the need of teachers and students who are using the system for educational purposes.

The school has done their part in buying the Chromebooks for the school; now all that’s left for the students to do is to do their part in making them useful. Not by playing games, but by using the computers in a useful way, to learn. Now that we have chromebooks, the educational disconnect can now be bridged. The computers provide applications that enable students to do homework at home, on the computer, with or without the Internet using offline apps. Purchasing the Chromebooks was a great idea; now the job for the students is to use them to further their education.