Technology is a great benefit to education in many ways. On the other hand it can also be a hindrance in the most serious of ways. If technology is administered properly, kept up to date and maintained, and refreshed on a 4 or 5 year schedule you will see an added increase in student achievement. But, if you let the technology lag, don’t properly maintain it or recycle older computers you are not helping the students learn, instead you are hurting their ability to learn the needed information to progress.
Take for example a school with a mix of 1, 2, 4, and 5 year old computers that are placed with the newest computers in locations that students do their most concentrated studies. The older the computer the more it is removed from active studies to research, games for rewards or break time, word processing and volunteer sign in via the internet.
Contrast that with a school that has a majority of older Macs, 5 year old Windows PC’s and less than 100 updated computers that are under 2 years old. A student can’t get the same education in the same time frame as the other school when the computers won’t run the current courseware. When it takes a computer 25 minutes to boot and sign in, a student cannot do the same amount of work as a student that the computer boots in 2 minutes, logs in quickly and then can work for 50 minutes on the needed course work.
Our district has implemented a new computer refresh plan that will make sure that our students are getting the best and the same technology across the district. This will take our students into a new age of better education with the proper technology. Every student deserves a quality education, from the teachers, to the cafeteria to PE and the Arts to the technology. It can be done, but the money and work from the IT staff needs to be top quality and consistent.
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