All LHS students will receive an iPad for school use, and the high school distribution began Tuesday. Seniors are to receive the new devices first, with the rest of the students acquiring theirs later in the week.
“I’m extremely excited that we are moving to a one-to-one iPad deployment here at Lindale High School,” Principal Valerie Payne said. “We have fantastic teachers, wonderful students, and a phenomenal school, so to add this technology to our educational process will only enhance it.”
The students will only be able to download selected educational apps that teachers request. Monitored by the district, the iPads will go through a filtering system for apps and internet usage. The Apple devices will not be replacing other technology, rather they will become an extension of classroom education.
“It’s really cool that our school board wanted to do this,” Brent Berryman, Career and Technical Education Director, said. “It cost a lot of money, but they believed it was going to have a positive impact on education.”
Superintendent Stan Surratt originally presented an initiative two years ago to the school board to slowly introduce iPads into a new grade level every year. Due to research by technology director Leslie Garakani, it was found that the iPads could be leased, which led to a bond being passed that provided funds for the $300 devices.
“I’m just really excited about the opportunities we’re going to be able to have and the opportunities for students to learn technology as another tool in their education process,” instructional technology specialist Beth Huse said. “The iPads are one more cog in the education machine.”
Administrators believe that incorporating iPads will help to speed up the learning process, as well as assist in meeting more children’s needs and taking instruction to the next level. Several other Texas school districts have recognized the usefulness of the devices as well. McAllen school district in South Texas was ranked internationally in the number of devices it had distributed to students, with plans to distribute over 20,000 iPods and iPads to its students.
“I think it is a fantastic idea that the school is moving towards a more technological approach in education,” senior Tyler Smith said. “The iPads will allow teachers to teach their students using a much wider variety and amount of resources through the internet and a plethora of available applications that aid in educating students.”