In the past 10 to 15 years classroom tools have gone from
chalk boards and overhead projectors to smart boards and iPads. Now, one
Tri-State school district is taking technology one step further. In an effort
to avoid the high cost of purchasing an iPad or similar device for every
student in the school district, Ohio County decided to let the students supply
the technology. It's all thanks to something called BYOD.
"Now instead of going out for a class trip to the computer lab, we get to use our phones, laptops, iPads, whatever we have," said Ohio County High School Senior TJ Gledhill. The 2013 graduate started kindergarten in 2000, so he grew up in the technology age, but a lot has changed over the years.
"Now everybody has phones," he said. "And everybody has iPads. Back then, when I started school, in Kindergarten, nobody had a cell phone." But teachers and students across the country are having to learn how to implement the technology into their daily lives. It's only the second day of school, but senior Haley Coppage already has some big plans for the district's "Bring Your Own Device" program, or BYOD.
"My English teacher told me we'll be using those for vocabulary and for reading projects," she said. "And my Biology teacher says we'll be taking tests on the Internet now." Technology has become so embedded into students' lives, Coppage says it's hard to imagine a day without it.
"It's every day. Every afternoon, every morning. It's everywhere you look," she said.
"Many years ago, I had one of those bag cell phones," joked Principal Greg Decker. He says it's so important for every student to know how to use the technology when they get into the real world. "It keeps growing. And to keep up with education we've got to continue to develop and use technology."
For Gledhill and Coppage, it's about so much more than being able to text in class; it's about preparing for the future.
"Technology's not going to go away," Coppage said.
"There's really no way to know, but it keeps growing," said Gledhill.
Principal Decker says the district realizes some students don't have access to the technology at home, or simply can't afford it. He says teachers will be looking for students without the technology, so the district can purchase iPads for those students to use in school if necessary.