Northland Pines High School adopts one-to-one technologySubmitted: 07/23/2013
Story By Lex Gray

Northland Pines High School adopts one-to-one technology
EAGLE RIVER - Northland Pines students will use a new kind of a book this fall.

The district is buying Chromebooks for all of its high school students.

The district tested Chromebooks in some classrooms last year.

But now, every high school student will have one, and they'll be able to take them home every day.

"It really allows the kids to do a lot more creation. If you look at what different generations like to do, this generation likes to create items," said Scott Foster, the district's director of technology. "That way, when a teacher gives an assignment, it's no longer 'you have to do a worksheet ' or write a paper, now kids can do all kinds of things, whether it's a presentation, whether it's a video that they post to YouTube and share."

Students and parents will get a handbook to help them learn how to use the laptops.

Teachers are also going through extensive training.

"This is a huge deal for the Northland Pines district in that we really think it's going to shift and change how we teach," Foster said. "It's going to allow us more freedoms with kids taking courses, it's going to allow teachers to take on some challenges that they've always wanted to but the resources weren't there."

The district charges each student a $30 technology fee each year. That covers in-house insurance.

It's also an incremental payment, so they can buy the Chromebook when they graduate.

That's a good way to balance the cost to the community.

"That was something the board talked a lot about, whether the fee should be charged, how much it should be, where's the balance to the taxpayers and families of this technology being added to the district," Foster said.

Students on the free or reduced price lunch program won't have to pay as much.

The district is also using Chromebooks in the middle school and at the fifth-grade level.

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