We are excited to inform you of the Southmoreland School District Technology Refresh plan, which will include a One-To-One (1:1) computing environment for all of our students at Southmoreland Middle School. Each of our students at SMS will receive a Google Chromebook in January of 2016 and will be taught how to use this technology in our school environment. We believe that it is part of our mission of High Quality Learning for All to ensure that every student has the tools necessary to be successful in the 21st century, and that through this new technology, every student will be prepared to produce the quality of work that is expected in post-secondary education and in the work force. In the winter of 2017, we will integrate our program into SHS for our high school students in grades 10-12.
The Southmoreland School District has invested in the Google Applications for Education platform which includes Google Docs and Gmail for student use. Because of the support that is provided by Google and the many applications that students may use in this environment, we believe it is an excellent fit for us. The Chromebook that each student receives will be prepared with Google applications that are approved by the district for student learning. The Chromebook is an excellent tool for our students and the Google platform allows the students to create, save and share their work in a new and advanced way.
The Chromebooks are easily managed by our Technology department through the Google Admin Console. The Chromebook will be preset with certain safety features to help to ensure the safest digital environment possible. For example, each Chromebook will be set with some “Safe Search” features so the browser is able to filter out inappropriate content as established by our Admin Console. More information can be found regarding this on the Southmoreland School District website under the Google tab.
We know that a concern that parents and students will have is the liability for the Chromebook as the student will have a school owned device with them at school and at home. Our plan to is create a system that takes into account that accidents happen, while also protecting this tool for use over time. Our experience tells us that students take good care of their devices because they value what the tool does for them. Therefore, the district will offer insurance through Safeware for the Chromebook for the use of the device. Information regarding the two types of insurance policies (full coverage and accidental coverage) can be found in our Chromebook Program under the Google tab.
An essential component to this new plan is the training that students, parents and teacher need to work effectively in the new learning environment. We are planning parent, student and teacher trainings for the fall of 2015 to make sure that as we begin this new opportunity that everyone is well prepared and able to fully implement this tool for learning. We will provide opportunities for parents to come to SMS and learn about this exciting new process and what the device can do. Our students will also receive training in the fall in preparation for the Chromebook distribution in January of 2016 so that each student is able to maximize his or her learning with the new device. Please see attached information regarding those trainings or view them on our website under the Google tab.
It is a new journey for our students and our school, and we are excited to begin it. We look forward to working with you on this journey and will be sharing more information with you as the fall semester begins. We look forward to seeing you at our trainings!
Updated on 8/22/16