9th and 10th Trusted with New Technology

Both Grades Given Laptops to Propel Doherty in the 21st Century

Victoria Mora, TheSpartan Staff

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At Doherty High School the freshmen and sophomore classes have received laptops as part of the 1:1 Technology Initiative. Checkout happened during registration.

The freshman class has 479 students, and only 26 opted out of having school laptops. The sophomore class has 499, and 41 do not have laptops. This means that 95% of freshmen have laptops, while 92% of sophomores do. Doherty juniors and seniors must provide their own technology or rely on teachers checking out Chromebook carts or signing up for a lab.

The adoption of new technology has changed the teaching style for some because teachers can take advantage of students having access to technology and can post information on websites like Schoology or Google Classroom. This new process can save paper and can also make it easier to access notes, see what homework needs to be made up, and ask for help if a student misses school or doesn’t understand something.

A few downsides are that the upperclassmen don’t have access to this technology and a lot of the teachers rely on technology even though not everyone has access.  It is also easier for some to get off task. “It’s just the click of a button and students go down a rabbit hole searching for something, but ultimately I do like having the computers,” said new teacher Barbara Bedford.

The plan was to start with the lower grade levels so they can have the technology throughout high school. Students may be able to take home the laptops after graduation after paying the yearly fee of $50, but this is still up in the air.

Each computer costs the district about $500. The plan is that every year more laptops get added. “I think that the [laptops] are a great advantage, and if used properly, then they are worth it for the thousands of students,” said Mrs. Heather Haas.

“I think the [laptops] offer great possibilities, and they level the playing field because it helps students that don’t have laptops/computers at home,” said Mrs. Suzi Schandoney.

Now you might be wondering how this started “This started about a year and a half ago when Principal Kevin Gardner went to the board and asked for approval. Every high school is doing [distribution] different. Doherty did 2 [grade levels at once] and Palmer 1. It’s been different for everyone. The approval part wasn’t really too hard because other people [also presented to the Board.] Doherty’s meetings this last year were about the problems that could come up, the goal, how teachers will do things, check out, and what apps will be used. District wide the push for Schoology was a major part,” said Mrs. Heather Haas.

Some juniors and seniors wish that they were given new laptops. Senior Vincent Baldwin is worried about the choice. “I feel like freshmen are going to lose them because they are irresponsible,” he said.

So far, our LTEs report that three have had broken screens, which is around $100 to fix, and three were reported lost, but two of those were returned.