Chromebook Pilot Expands to High Schools

One-to-One Chromebook Pilot Expands to High Schools
Posted on 10/22/2018
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Plains junior students with their new Chromebooks
Lakota Local Schools is excited to announce the district is expanding its one-to-one (1:1) technology pilot to both Lakota East and Lakota West students in January.

Following the successful launch of the WE are Empowered initiative at the junior schools in September, every student in grades 9-11 will receive a district-owned Chromebook as part of Lakota’s innovative approach to providing a student-centered education. “We are excited to be moving ahead with the 1:1 initiative at the high schools,” said Superintendent Matthew Miller. “Information is available at your fingertips in today’s world. Our teaching methods must incorporate the use of technology in the classroom to better prepare our students for life beyond high school,” he continued.

Twelfth grade students will continue to have access to the same educational experiences as the underclassmen through the use of devices currently available at each high school, as well as having the ability to bring their own device to class. This decision supports the district’s commitment to long-term financial sustainability, given the monetary investment needed to purchase devices for seniors who will be graduating in a few months.

The WE are Empowered initiative gives students more access to real world learning through collaboration with peers and online content. “Technology is not going away,” Miller notes. “It is our responsibility to make sure that our students have the skills they will need to be successful when they graduate. Incorporating technology in our classrooms through the WE are Empowered initiative is another way we are preparing our kids for the future.” 

Todd Wesley, chief technology officer at Lakota, is looking forward to including more students in the pilot. “We are excited to expand this initiative to the Lakota West and Lakota East campuses to further empower our high school learners through a more personalized experience.” Wesley agrees with Miller that the program is designed to complement Lakota’s teachers by providing access to a robust learning tool to enhance student learning.

A group of students from both high schools' main and freshman campuses will test out the devices prior to the January launch. Josie Godfrey, a junior at Lakota West, is one them. “I think it’s exciting. I think it’s going to be a really good way for students to get to connect with their schoolwork,” she said. 

The district has plans in place to offer professional development to assist high school teachers as the initiative moves forward, just as it has for junior school staff. Expanded teaching opportunities with using technology to enhance lessons and projects, including real world problem solving, are some examples. “We’ve seen the excitement from the junior school teachers and students,” said Miller. “We’re looking forward to bringing the same level of excitement to the high schools in January.”

Pictured above: Plains Junior students receiving their Chromebooks in September; the 1:1 program will be expanded in January to include grades 9-11.