What is a Chromebook?

A Chromebook is an Internet dependent laptop with a speedy start up time (less than 7 seconds in most cases). Chromebooks are relatively lightweight and powered by Google’s Chrome operating system. Documents, presentations, and projects are created and stored in “the cloud” or on the internet. Each student logs into the Chromebook with their school issued “gostangs” email address. With this email address, students can access Google classroom, Google Docs, Google Slides, Google Forms, and a wide variety of Google Apps for Education.

What is the purpose of the Chromebook Pilot and Launch?

Our district understands that the world of the present and the future will require our students to be highly comfortable and competent with using many different types of hardware and software in order to work, play, and live. In order to assist in preparing our students for a world in which technology is ever-present and constantly changing, we believe it is necessary to integrate these tools of modern literacy as much as possible into learning with various technologies. The Chromebook is a device that opens up a world of opportunity for our students to become GLOBAL learners.

Does this mean that students will never use a pencil, pen, or book again in their classes?

Using technology such as Chromebooks and electronic devices does not mean that we never use conventional tools like paper, pens, and print books. There will be times when using these traditional tools are the most appropriate way of meeting learning outcomes. However, enabling student access to our network with the Chromebooks and other devices will increase 21st Century skills, giving each student confidence and competence in using technology appropriately throughout their learning and development.

When will every student get a Chromebook?

Student Chromebooks will be issued in January 2017. Before students receive a Chromebook, there will be student and parent information sessions, student assemblies about digital citizenship, and other support information provided through various venues.

Will students use computers too much for schoolwork?

Part of the goal of this program is to reach an appropriate balance of traditional and digital learning tools. This balance will be the foundation of the technology savvy culture we hope to create, in terms of appropriate computer use at school and at home. Overall, we want to shift students’ perceptions of computers from “toys” to “tools” that will serve them now and in the future. Many employment and postsecondary opportunities require an understanding of the benefits and drawbacks of technology use as it pertains to the types of devices we will be integrating into our learning experiences.

How can Chromebooks and other devices improve learning?

Chromebooks and other devices can serve as “virtual workspaces” for students, creating opportunities for research, composition, revision, and communication that are fluid and exciting. With easier access to information and feedback, students can more easily “rethink” their original ideas and go further with their conceptual development. In general, this is the main reason most of us now use word processors instead of pencils or typewriters—we can express our ideas more fluidly, and then more easily revise and reshape them. Network capable devices also open up the opportunity for students to interact with a community of teachers and learners more broadly than ever before! We hope to see students continue using devices to think critically, create, communicate and access information as well as begin to establish a positive digital presence often expected by many employers and postsecondary institutions.