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The Shawnee News-Star
  • Plainview students begin second semester with computers

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  • Second semester at Plainview Middle School and High School will start off like Christmas, as the schools begin the 1:1 Initiative.
    Each student will receive an HP Elite Pad 900.
    "We are attempting to get closer to what students will be doing in their everyday lives when they get done with school," says high school principal Brian Nichols.
    The devices will be equipped with Windows 8, an 8 megapixel camera, Intel X86 processor, productivity jacket, Microsoft Office 2013 and an eight-hour battery life. Students will also have access to an app store, with only apps approved by the school.
    "It's a very handy device, very durable," Nichols explains. "We intentionally got it because it would be durable in little teenage hands and has the capabilities to do what we want it to."
    Right now, the information technology department is preparing the devices for student use.
    "I'm making sure they are ready to handle our network, and that we can track them if they get lost. We will also protect students from going places they aren't supposed to go," explains William Oats, IT assistant.
    The school's Mobile Computing Handbook is available online under the For Parents tab on the school website, www.plainview.k12.ok.us.
    A student/parent device use agreement must be signed and returned to the school in order for a device to be issued.
    Parent meetings will take place throughout the week in the auditorium. Parents can ask administrators questions about the initiative, get another copy of the use agreement and turn in the use agreement.
    n Today, 6 p.m. Sixth-grade
    n Today, 7 p.m. Ninth-grade
    n Wednesday, 5:30 p.m. Seventh-grade
    n Thursday, 5:30 p.m. Eighth-grade
    n Thursday, 6:30 p.m. 10th-grade
    n Dec. 9, 6 p.m. 11th and 12th-grade
    If a parent cannot make the meeting for their child's grade, they can attend another meeting.
    "We are very excited about going one to one," says middle school principal Tim Parham. "Our lives are about to change. We know we will have to overcome obstacles we don't even know about yet. We will overcome those, and this is great for our students."
    Teachers and students are already preparing ways the new devices can be used in the classroom.
    "I think it's fantastic. We can have interaction not just in class, but out of class," says Sandy Bloodworth, high school biology teacher. "It will give students a chance to use their electronic knowledge and bring it into the classroom."
    Bloodworth adopted a flipped classroom model more than two years ago, which includes students listening to her lectures online and take notes at home. Then class time is spent on labs and discussions.
    Page 2 of 2 - These activities will be complemented by the tablets.
    "It will be easier to get stuff done, and we won't have to carry as much stuff around," says sophomore Mikaylyn Gerken.
    Also, it won't be so easy to leave a single homework assignment at home, as they will be online.
    "We won't be using as much paper, which is better for the environment, and we won't lose papers as easily. We will be a lot more organized," says freshman Abby Bilsbury.
    However, there are also some predicted downsides, as apps such as Edmodo will allow teachers and students to send messages to each other whenever.
    "Teachers will bug us like crazy. Sometimes the notifications go off in the middle of the night, and if a teacher forgot to give us an assignment, they can give it later through Edmodo," says sophomore Alexis Campbell.
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