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District establishes one-to-one program for high school students


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By Madison Preuett

Reporter

Up until this year, the students of the Blue Springs School District have been allowed to “bring your own device.” When it comes to computers and online homework, it’s always up to the student. What if not everyone has their own device or even their own cell phone? How is everyone supposed to have access to the internet at home or at school? The truth is not everyone does, and the school district has finally recognized this. Blue Springs School District voters approved August 7th, to have a levy issue that will pay for loaned computers to every student who goes to a Blue Springs school from 9-12th grade.

The district has been working with Microsoft to bring in 5,000 Microsoft Surface Go’s (128 GB) to each student who wants one. This process will start with the seniors and make their way to the freshmen. It is estimated that by the end of October everyone who wants a computer should have them. There are steps to get the computers, though. There will be an insurance policy fee of about $25. The student must pay the insurance policy if they want to take the computer home; they can, however, choose not to pay, but students will be 100% responsible for the computers cost of damages and repairs if they damage it off and on school property. Students also have an option to pay and not take the computer home. If a student can’t afford the $25, that student can plan with the office. Or, if a student doesn’t want one, they don’t have to get one, but if a student wants to bring their own device, they must be willing to have it with them almost all the time. All students must have a certain signed form that went home with them before a device will be issued to them

There are, of course rules to these computers too. There will be a video and paper forms. All students will watch and receive these things, including a handbook, on how to take care of them and basic “nuts and bolts,” as South Principal Charlie Belt said. In addition, students will need to go through some training before they get the computers. Once the year has come to an end, those who got their computers will have to check them back in around finals time. Over the summer, work will be done to them, like fixing anything and updating them. If the student comes back next year they will be given the same one, they had the previous year because every computer will have a bar code and that computer will be assigned to that student.

Belt said that money will be transferred in district budget to pay for computers, so with zero taxes increased on the community, the district now has extra money to spend on things like the new computers. Some students even had a couple words to say about the new computers.

Junior Abby Hallberg said she liked the idea.

“Some teachers don’t know how to use the ones we have now, and the ones now are harder to access depending on the teachers, because not every teacher has a laptop in their room,” she said.

Junior Bronwyn Comes also was in favor.

“The computers now are a lot less convenient because not everyone can just go to the library. These computers will be a lot more organized,” she said. “Right now, it is not because not everyone has a computer and during WIN they are all full.”

Junior Maggie Goldsmith said, “I think it’s really cool! Making things more convenient because sometimes teachers don’t have them when you need them, but now these computers will always be in reach.”

More feedback came from Junior Gavin Schaefer, who said it’s a “good idea for people in different demographics to get access to higher education”

At least one student expressed concern.

Hatty Monroe said “I’m worried about people damaging them.”

 

 

 

 

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