Technology makes a breakthrough at SF

Next school year, beginning with the graduating class of 2023, each SF ninth grader will receive a laptop to carry with them throughout the year.  

Olivia+West+uses+the+Lenovo+laptop+to+help+her+studies+in+teacher+Stacey+Bogus%27+AP+Government+and+Politics++class.
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Technology makes a breakthrough at SF

Olivia West uses the Lenovo laptop to help her studies in teacher Stacey Bogus' AP Government and Politics  class.

Olivia West uses the Lenovo laptop to help her studies in teacher Stacey Bogus' AP Government and Politics class.

Olivia West uses the Lenovo laptop to help her studies in teacher Stacey Bogus' AP Government and Politics class.

Olivia West uses the Lenovo laptop to help her studies in teacher Stacey Bogus' AP Government and Politics class.

By Bryn Borzillo, Features Editor

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Staff Photo
Students are utilizing laptops like this in Spring-Ford’s high school. Next school year, beginning with the graduating class of 2023, each ninth grader will receive a laptop to carry with them throughout the year. These devices will be taken home and brought back to school each day, allowing for students to easily access documents and schoolwork.

 

Technology surrounds us. You can hear students typing away in each class, working hard to take notes, conduct research, and write papers.  Technology’s prominence in modern society leaves many students confused as to when Spring-Ford High School will hand laptops to each student.  

What many are unaware of, however, is that the administrators have a plan.

Next school year, beginning with the graduating class of 2023, each ninth grader will receive a laptop to carry with them throughout the year.  These devices will be taken home and brought back to school each day, allowing for students to easily access documents and schoolwork. The hope is to allow students to keep academic files all in one place, allowing for better organization, as well as quicker entry to important papers.  

According to the Director of Technology, Robert Catalano, the goal is to transition from paper to laptops.

In the following school year (2020-2021), 11th and 12th grade students will receive laptops, undergoing the same program as freshmen and sophomores.  The incoming 9th graders will acquire new laptops similar to those currently being used in modernized learning classrooms.

“We’re looking for something that is best for the students, that will be fast, last all four years, be drop-resistant, water-resistant, and the keys will not come off,” Catalano said.  

Although the idea of personal laptops is a new concept for the school, the modernized learning program is not.  The current technology program trains designated teachers to utilize laptops in their lessons, through cohorts.

Each teacher in a cohort is assigned a laptop cart containing approximately thirty laptops to be used in their classroom, along with instructional days on how to properly use the devices.  

“The purpose of modernized learning is to maximize student engagement using differentiated instruction through technology when it meets the learning goal,” Dr. Weidenbaugh, the ninth grade building principal, said.

The program is meant to better prepare teachers to meet student needs.  As the world around continues to develop, more technology is used in everyday lives. The hope is to reduce the amount of paper in the classroom and increase the use of laptops and other equipment in order to keep students actively engaged.  

“There are so many different programs for our students and this is almost like the next step,” Weidenbaugh said. “How do we continue to help students achieve their goals and be prepared for twenty first century learners?”  

Weidenbaugh added that the goal of this technological process is to better prepare students for the world that lies ahead of them, and use the tool for learning as well as communication.

The excitement for the program, as well as the nervousness that comes along with such a big change, can be felt throughout the district.  Students are eager to get their hands on this improved technology, and administrators are interested to see how these laptops will affect the classrooms.

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