One-to-one laptop initiative will remove computer lab, laptop carts


Photo Credit: Abby Stern

Computers in B-154 will be removed when the new one-to-one initiative is introduced.

by Abby Stern, Staff Writer

Provided the Board of Education adds the one-to-one initiative to the 2017/18 budget, students will receive school-issued laptops in the fall.  Laptops will be distributed each year and will be returned each summer in order for computers to be updated with new software.  Computers will be allowed to be brought to and from school by students.

With this large change coming to Glen Rock, what will happen to the existing school computer labs? There are six existing computer labs in the school, and once each student receives his or her own laptop, it may seem that there is not as much of a need for these facilities anymore.

However, five out of the six computer labs will remain intact.

“Most of our Computer Labs will remain.  S-119, D-113, C-130, C-131 and C-132 house sophisticated software, in which we feel desktops may be advantageous.  We do feel the laptops will be able to run a fair amount of this software well enough, so that students can work on their science, art and music projects at home,” Principal John Arlotta said.

Although the five aforementioned computer labs will remain, the removal of the computer lab in room B-154 is anticipated.  This room houses all the business classes in the school, including entrepreneurship, financial literacy, and marketing.  The justification for the removal of the desktops in this room is that each student’s individual laptop can meet the needs of the Business Department of the school.

“The one lab we anticipate removing is in B154.  We feel that the purchased laptops will run all that Business needs, which will allow us more flexibility with this classroom,” Arlotta said.

The removal of the lab in room B154 requires a group effort.

“This will be a collective effort – administration, support staff, teachers and students – we hope our students will take ownership of this as well,” Arlotta explained.

The responsibility of taking care of the laptops lies with a different group.

“This task will fall under our Technology Department, who currently makes sure things are up and running and updated.  In some ways, newer equipment should reduce some of their challenges in getting old equipment to work the way we need it to,” Arlotta said.

The school will be purchasing around 750 new laptops in order to accommodate all the students in the high school.  These new computers will be leased, instead of using laptops the school has already purchased for classrooms in computer carts.  Teachers in the school have been testing possible computer models that the school is considering providing the students.

The existing computer cart laptops in the school will be redistributed into other schools in the district.  These laptop carts placed around the school were previously used for in-class projects and activities, but now each student will be able to use his/her personal computer for these tasks.

Collectively, students and teachers in the school are eagerly anticipating the distribution of personal laptops.

“I think, by having my own computer, I’ll be able to do my work that I could only do at home, at school,” sophomore Catherine Bennett said.

“It would be really helpful not having to waste time getting laptop carts or going to the media center,” junior Nick McRae said.

The laptops will be beneficial educationally as well, and this is what Principal Arlotta is most excited about.

“We think that this will be the next natural progression in our attempts to equip our students with College and Career readiness skills we think they should possess,” he stated.