Atkinson Town Hall

Atkinson Town Hall
The Norman Rockwellian picture of Atkinson

There is a NEW POLL at Right--------------------->

Don't forget to VOTE!
Make your voice heard!

Welcome Message and Mission Statement

Welcome to the NEW Atkinson Reporter! Under new management, with new resolve.

The purpose of this Blog is to pick up where the Atkinson Reporter has left off. "The King is dead, Long live the King!" This Blog is a forum for the discussion of predominantly Atkinson; Officials, People, Ideas, and Events. You may give opinion, fact, or evaluation, but ad hominem personal attacks will not be tolerated, or published. The conversation begun on the Atkinson Reporter MUST be continued!

This Blog will not fall to outside hacks from anyone, especially insecure public officials afraid of their constituents criticism.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Grant funds iPads for Timberlane officials

From the Eagle Tribune;

November 16, 2011
Grant funds iPads for Timberlane officials
By Cara Hogan

PLAISTOW — Timberlane school administrators are on the cutting edge — they all have iPads.

The Timberlane Regional School District bought 29 iPads this year for administrators, funded entirely by a state grant. Each 32-gigabyte iPad 2 costs about $599.

Scott Strainge, director of secondary education, said the district received $20,000 from a Title II state education grant for professional development and school improvement. Timberlane is one of few districts in New Hampshire to obtain iPads through the grant.

"The grant paid 100 percent for the iPads and the training for all of the administrators," he said. "We're working directly with the state and they approved the purchase. All principals, curriculum coordinators and directors got iPads, including myself."

This month, Strainge hopes to use the iPads to create a database for analyzing the district's curriculum and teaching style, which can be used later as a guide for teacher training. Strainge said the iPads are a good investment because they will save the district money in the long run.

"Previously, we were paying an outside agency about $20,000 a year to help us with data collection in classroom observation," he said. "We can now reallocate those funds. The iPads have allowed us to create our own infrastructure. It's been a great success so far."

Michael Hogan, principal of Timberlane Regional Middle School, said he and other principals use the iPads during "walk-throughs" to observe teaching in the classroom.

"I'm able to take a snapshot of what kinds of instructional strategies are being used," he said. "I evaluate the learning and input it into the iPad as I walk around. Then, we can send it back to the teacher as immediate feedback to show how kids are learning."

Hogan said he was trained Monday on how to use the iPad to input the data. He hopes to have a full, working database by Thanksgiving.

"We just got this set up," he said. "We can also track data across the whole school. We can say as a school, on Monday, we saw 12 percent of the school using technology, for example. It will really help us track how we're teaching."

John Holland, the district's director of technology, said the iPads are a big improvement over the outdated personal digital assistants, or PDAs, administrators were using before.

"The PDAs made it very difficult to do the observations," he said. "You had to go back and sync it to the computer and a lot of times, it wasn't working well. The iPad eliminates these issues completely because we use the wireless Internet."

Strainge said other local school districts have been asking how Timberlane has been using the iPads and are also thinking of applying for a grant. Students are also using the iPads for a few projects, Hogan said.

"The students and myself can capture and film to make short movies and productions with it that way," he said.

The next step for the district is to get iPads into classrooms for teachers and students to use every day.

"What's happening now, as I walk around with my iPad, the kids are like, 'Whoa, can we use it?"' Strainge said. "They'll show me how to do things. And teachers are asking to borrow the iPad and try things. We're thinking we might run some pilots with some classrooms with some type of tablet. It's very exciting."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Nice, now taxpayes have paid for a new gadget for administrators to walk around with, and they still can't teach the kids good enough to pass exams. We need less gadgets to waste time with, and get good teachers that can teach.

Cut the school budget a few million that would get a few teachers laid off, and perhaps we could get the rest of the teachers attention. Once we have their attention, we might get the rest to teach.