Lake Stevens School District has begun a one-to-one technology initiative that put a Chromebook laptop computer in the hands of students from grades 3 -12 by end of the 2016-17 school year. Funds to purchase the Chromebooks came from the Technology Levy, which was approved by the LSSD community in February 2014. A key tenet of the Foundation for Excellence, the district's strategic plan, supports the use of bold, innovative technology that engage students and transform the learning process. This initiative moves us down that path.
We first began planning for our 1:1 initiative when each teacher was given a Chromebook to use after attending a full day of training. Once teachers began to feel comfortable with this new technology, we introduced its use with students in various grade levels, schools and content areas. Seeing great success in these early pilots and tests, we began the move to provide equitable opportunities for all students to learn with a Chromebook at least once each school day through shared carts at the elementary and a cart for each secondary English class.
After seeing the success of this first widespread use of technology, it became apparent that the best way to continue forward was to provide each student with their own Chromebook. In our current model, elementary students will continue to leave their Chromebooks at school in carts, but students in grades 6-12 will keep theirs with them, allowing them to learn at any time and any place.
We began our move to a 1:1 technology environment the in October 2015 when every student at North Lake and Lake Stevens Middle Schools took possession of their own Chromebook. In late January 2016, the students at Cavelero Mid High School were given their Chromebooks, and Lake Stevens High School students will all get a Chromebook prior to the start of the 2016-17 school year. As each school moves to 1:1 and students are given new Chromebooks, we'll be moving the Chromebook carts currently assigned to the secondary schools to provide a 1:1 experience for our elementary students in grades 2-5. This will be completed by the beginning of the 2016-17 school year.
Why is the Lake Stevens School District moving to a 1:1 model for students?
Research shows that a 1:1 computing environment is the most cost effective way to implement technology of all the current models. That same research shows that continuous access to a computing device for every student leads to increased academic achievement and financial benefits. We believe that we can leverage technology to increase student engagement and provide opportunities for students to create, collaborate, communicate effectively, and practice critical thinking. As our teachers learn to work with technology we see the possibility for more personalized learning opportunities, both to learn at a faster pace and to fill in gaps in learning that are critical for future success.
We are very excited about our move to 1:1 computing and hope that you are as well. We feel incredibly fortunate to belong to a community that values education and recognizes the critical role technology plays in providing a first-class education, and look forward to utilizing our resources to positively impact student achievement.
How Can Technology Enhance Learning?
We believe technology provides many opportunities to help our students learn.
Integrating technology improves student enthusiasm toward learning, making students actively engaged in their classes and taking ownership in their learning.
Brain research has proven that students are now learning differently and need new instructional methods to meet their needs.
Our students will be taught how to be effective 21st Century Learners. This means they will be digitally literate and use the four C’s (Creativity, Communication, Collaboration, Critical Thinking) to be global citizens.
Technology will allow students to be active learners.
Student writing and production will increase dramatically. Students will be able to peer edit easily and more constructively, as well as globally. The focus on writing will become less of an "exercise" and become more of a crucial method for sharing information or telling stories. The technology allows students to share their writing with vast and different audiences if they choose.