Inside L-S: One-to-One, BYOD, and the future
One program that many surrounding school districts have explored and implemented is a “one-to-one” approach, wherein each student simply receives a laptop for use in all of his or her classes, which obviates the necessity for computer carts and labs. Griscom says that although L-S is “actively exploring” the possibilities and implications of such a program, he does not see it on the immediate horizon.
“We’re in the minority [as a district without a one-to-one program in place or in the works],” Griscom admits.
|Mr. Bill Griscom is the technology director at L-S|
However, Griscom suggests that in many districts, the technology gets ahead of the planning and professional development for staff -- such a program requires a huge shift in pedagogical strategy -- and ultimately they end up with a bigger problem: “distractions on the desk.”
Consequently, the District plans to continue to invest in its current model of computer carts, supplemented by the Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) program that was implemented a few years ago. Although there was a perception that such a program might replace the need for one-to-one, Griscom says he views it as a “complementary” tool that makes sense -- why wouldn’t a student connect to the wireless on a smartphone to quickly look something up?
“It is hard for teachers to plan without knowing what students will have,” Griscom says, explaining why it cannot be the primary technological initiative.
Ultimately, Griscom thinks the future rests in a fundamental metamorphosis of the teaching paradigm.
“We want to be transformative in learning,” he says.
This requires a lot of professional development for teachers to change how their classes are structured. Technology can be used to enhance learning rather than just change a work process.
As an example, he cites writing a paper -- using a computer to type the paper simply replaces hand-writing it, but technology can allow students to collaborate on a paper in real time, leave comments, suggest changes, etc., a complete evolution and improvement to the learning process. That is the type of growth he hopes to help facilitate at L-S.
It takes time.
This is the second installment of our December "Tech Tuesdays" -- part of our series: Inside L-S: Technology in the Classroom. We thank Mr. Bill Griscom, technology director at L-S, for his candor during our interviews. You can read the entire series on our Inside L-S page.
--Benjamin Pontz, LSNews.org Editor-In-Chief; Photo by Megan Doolittle, LSNews.org Staff Photographer