Washington Evening Journal
http://washington-ia.villagesoup.com/p/933314

Neighbors Growing Together | Aug 29, 2014

Is the 1:1 iniative in WACO’s near future?

By Brooks Taylor | Dec 04, 2012

WAYLAND — A WACO instructor urged the WACO School Board during its Saturday work session to strongly consider implementation of the 1:1 initiative, possibly as early as the second semester of the current school year.
“We have had people tell us that they will leave the WACO School District if we don’t have the 1:1,” Andrea McBeth, a math instructor at WACO, told the board.
“This is a system change,” Tom Ferguson, high-school language arts instructor, added. “How do we meet the need of students and remain competitive? The chromebook (computer) will allow you to do those things and it will be more affordable to the school district. This would give every student and teacher the ability to incorporate and use technology at school and at home.”
Chromebooks are relatively inexpensive tablet computers. Ferguson said they could be purchased for under $300, and the 4 + 1 Innovative Calendar Committee is recommending that the district purchase the computers for all students in grades 9-11 and add one grade to the program each year.
Other benefits of the program, as listed by the committee, include:
• Keeps WACO competitive with surrounding school districts;
• Gives every student/teacher the ability to incorporate and use technology at school and home;
• Chromebooks are 99 percent self-maintained.
Funds for the purchase of computers does not have to come from the general fund. SILO (school infrastructure local option tax money) and PPEL (physical plant and equipment levy funds) could be financial sources.
If WACO were to implement the 1:1 initiative, Mt. Pleasant would become the only county school district not to have the program.

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