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The Montgomery County Board of Education has signed off on a plan to purchase 40,000 laptops and tablets for students.
Over the next three school years, students from grades three through 12 will receive Chromebook laptops, while those in kindergarten through 2nd grade will get Android-based tablets. The goal is to incorporate technology into everyday learning.
Dr. Erick Lang, the head of curriculum and instructional programs for the school system, says having the computers will allow teachers to test students faster after lectures and also allow them to give — and get — immediate feedback.
"As adults we're critically thinking, problem-solving, communicating, and analyzing information everyday. And we should expect our students to do that everyday in the classroom," Lang says.
Each student will be given a secure account to sign in to their device, allowing staff to monitor what they do and prevent them from going to unauthorized websites. For the upcoming school year, students in grades 3, 5, and 6 will get the laptops, as well as high school students only for social studies classes. The rest of the devices will be handed out in future school years.
The roughly $15 million price tag for the laptops and tablets is already included in the budget the county council authorized for the school system.