Pittston Area recently distributed more than 1,500 new Chromebooks to students in grades seven to 12. Planning for the 1:1 initiative started last school year with the technology committee playing a crucial role in selecting devices that would best serve the needs of students and teachers and also fit into the district budget.
“The goal of any school district is to prepare their students for the real world. Technology to today’s students is a given. They don’t know life without it. We live in a digital age,” said Superintendent Kevin Booth.
“As educators we must provide our students with the resources necessary to be successful,” he added. “We believe our 1:1 initiative will lead to an increase in student engagement, collaboration and it will provide our teachers with data they can use to drive their instruction.”
During an assembly at the start of the new school year, Dr. John Haas, high school principal, explained the program and the responsibilities of the students receiving the new computers. In September, the technology department began distributing the computers by grade level. Each computer has the name and grade of each student. They will return the devices at the end of the school year and will receive the same computer the following year.
“The 1:1 Chromebook initiative helps to provide our students with the real world skills to work digitally, collaborate meaningfully and communicate effectively,” said Technology Director Christy Savakinas. “We are excited about the possibilities this program brings to the district.”
As of today, approximately 1,000 high school students in grades nine to 12 have received a Chromebook and the district’s technology department is working to prepare another 530 devices for the seventh and eighth grade students.
As Pittston Area embarks on this new enterprise, the mobile devices will become an important part of the curriculum and the students will begin to use them more frequently.
“The feedback from our students after receiving the Chromebooks has been extremely positive. Students have been using them daily for various uses. Students are extremely grateful and feel that this is the best our technology has ever been at PA,” Haas said. “Our teachers have done an excellent job with our professional development plan and implementation of activities to enhance instruction for our students. It’s exciting where we are at and even more exciting thinking about where we are going.”
Students have enjoyed using the new devices.
“I like that we have 24/7 access on the computer and that there is less note writing as the teachers post the information notes on the computer,” said 12th grade student John DeLucca,
Twelfth grader Avery Strucke agreed. “It is easier to get notes and work projects on the Chromebook,” he said.