New Technology

New+Technology

Vincent Niewald, Reporter

 With the start of a new school year, Bellevue East has made many changes to the day to day activities in and out of the classroom. One such change is the implementation of a new school policy that allows every student their own iPad to take between classes and home. 

     “I think that it’s good to do homework at home and actually be productive because you have the technology and the apps at home that you cannot download on other devices without paying for them,” sophomore Jayda Parker said. 

     One-to-one iPads for students was a fairly major decision, and it may have lasting effects on how teachers provide students with information that they need to succeed. Not only that, but iPads are expensive, and may malfunction. 

     “One iPad for every student is what was distributed for students. The cost for the iPad is about $355. We have been taking care of iPads since about 2012,” Technology Director Greg Boettger said. 

     While the school did have access to iPads last year, it was a smaller number than what it has access to this year. Given that iPads are now expected to be a part of everyday learning, some teachers have had to make adjustments to how they teach. 

     “Each teacher receives 6 days of Blended Learning training where they learn not only how to use the iPad, but also how to incorporate Blended Learning into their curriculum,” instructional coach Chelsea Hoglund said. “Each building also has an instructional coach who works with teachers on Blended Learning and incorporating Blended Learning into the curriculum. We are still in the process of training all of the teachers in the district due to missing the 4th quarter of school last year.”   

Such widespread changes began taking place during the quarantine that happened from spring break to the start of the 2020-21 school year. Though it was a large operation, sources said that there was not much difficulty making the transition. 

     “With how BPS rolled out the iPads, we have planned and prepared to go 1:1 on a large scale for years and we were ready for that,” Boettger said. 

     There were many reasons for sending out the iPads, like removing as much possible spread of COVID-19, or making school more accessible from home. 

     “BPS decided to go 1:1 with the iPads to better prepare students for the 21st century,” Hoglund added. 

     With the many changes made, some of them were bound to not be positively received. Students may enjoy some parts of the new technology, but not all of them. 

     “My least favorite thing about using the iPads is that it will lose connection to the internet, or it will like restart; and it’s really annoying. It’s also annoying to not have styluses, like pens, to write on our iPads, and we have to use our fingers and it’s really slow. Or sometimes the writing doesn’t work out how we want it to,” Parker said.