Superintendent of Perry Township Schools
The way students learn has changed dramatically since you and I were in school. Back then, all we needed were paper and pencils – and maybe a calculator, depending on your generation.
Today, technology is an essential component of lesson plans everywhere, and our Information Technology Department is doing all it can to ensure that our students and staff are equipped with the tools necessary to succeed.
We are proud to ensure that every student and teacher in Grades 2-12 has access to a Google Chromebook. Our kindergartners and first-graders have access to a minimum of five computers in each classroom, as well as computer labs.
While the implementation of mobile technology is still a fairly new practice in schools across the country, it is gradually becoming more common, and we’re slowly getting a better understanding of its importance.
A recent Pew Research Center survey found that 47 percent of teachers strongly agreed and an additional 44 percent somewhat agreed that students need digital literacy courses to be successful academically and beyond.
Likewise, students in classes using BrainPOP learning games increased their SAT 10 scores between 11 and 24 points, according to SEG Research, an independent educational research firm out of Pennsylvania.
Since the way our children learn is evolving, we are committed to ensuring that our teachers, staff and equipment evolve as well. We pay special attention to our infrastructure to ensure that we can accommodate the technology changes.
Our IT department negotiated a contract to increase our internet speeds. Without the increase, our one-to-one student-to-Chromebook ratio would not be possible.
While we applaud all of the behind-the-scenes work that our IT staff members put forth to keep our technology competitive with other districts, we also appreciate the initiative they’ve taken to become more involved with our instruction efforts with their Makerspace program.
They have partnered with Perry Meridian Sixth Grade Academy and Mary Bryan, Lincoln, MacArthur and Rosa Parks elementary schools to enhance their science, technology, engineering, arts and math efforts.
The department is in the process of setting up 3-D printers at the Makerspace schools. Three-D design and printing will allow teachers to create custom tools for teaching and learning, as well as print student-designed projects.
We are thankful for companies like littleBits Electronics and Lego Education that provide us educational tools. We’re excited to watch our students learn and grow as technology transforms how we teach and how students learn.