One-to-One Computing at Saint Francis High School
As a leader in the use of instructional technology Saint Francis High School has invested in numerous technologies over the last ten years to enhance the learning environment. In 2012 we launched a comprehensive initiative to place an iPad into every student's hand. For Fall 2013 we are building on this momentum by taking steps to insure the continued improvement of the program.
About the program
After reviewing numerous devices in 2012 it was determined that the program would use the 32GB version of the third generation Apple iPad. Families are not be charged an additional fee for the device. The school owns the iPads and loans them to each student. Professional development specifically focused on the iPad began last year and is on-going. Students will receive their devices at the on Registration Days, August 15-16 2013.
Additionally, as part of the program we have expanded our technical support to a student-to-student program as part of our helpdesk in the Cassin Library during each lunch and collaboration. This program is led by Mr. Marrion, our iPad Program Manager. This program allows students to get peer-led, faculty-guided assistance with any technical question that might come up during the iPad program. The success of this program was greatly enhanced by the student participation in this program during 2012-13.
For our employees we also enhanced the program by hiring Alex Bega and Matt Maguire as our Educational Technologists to work directly with teachers and to assist with new ways to approach teaching and learning in the classroom. As current classroom teachers they are on the front line with respect to evaluating best practices for the effective use of iPads in our classrooms. Through the innovation and enthusiasm that they provide we expect the new year to better than ever.
Behind the scenes we are always evaluating new technologies and apps for student use. As such we are excited to incorporate Casper Focus into our classrooms to improve student engagement. Additionally we continue to benefit from a Cisco-driven wireless infrastructure and Airwave by Aruba Networks. These allow us to deliver a high-quality networking experience for all students.
One of our primary goals for the one-to-one program was to improve the quality of life for all students. A tangible manifestation of this is through the reduction in the number of physical textbooks that students must carry with them. We are please to announce that over 50% of all textbooks and novels are available in digital form. We also recognize that many students still prefer to use a physical text. For many courses this is also still an option. We are excited to see the developments in the fields of eBooks and the use of alternative forms of content to supplement direct instruction.