District 181 Election: Do iPads Belong in the Classroom?
Patch asked the question, and the five District 181 Board of Education candidates provided their answers.
In its 2013 candidate questionnaire, Patch asked the five candidates for Community Consolidated School District 181 Board of Education the following questions:
Do you support continuing the @d181 Initiative? What is your stance on iPads in the classroom?
Here, in alphabetical order, are the candidates' responses:
Gary Clarin: "I am a firm believer in technology and its use to promote student problem solving. At the February board meeting, I recently attended, D181 was awarded the Apple Distinguished Program, recognizing D181 for its exemplary use of computers in the learning process. The world in which we live continues to expand and the use of technology allows us to meet the accelerated learning it presents. I promote technology and if it means the use of computers or I-Pads in the classrooms, then I would be for it."
Mridu Garg: "There are many studies and articles available regarding 1:1 initiatives, with the conclusion being that there is no clear data to indicate increased student learning with either iPads or a 1:1 initiative. Fortunately, we live in an affluent community where most students have access to one or more computers at home, including iPads. Our children are already reaping the benefits of technology at home and within the classroom with the availability of laptop carts, iPads and smart boards. Additionally, many of the PTOs and the D181 Foundation have already generously purchased such devices and made them available in the elementary schools. Should the data support the addition of iPads, or newer emerging technology, in the classrooms, then I would like to see applications which support and enhance the curriculum prior to a full scale adoption."
Richard Fitzgerald: "I support the concept of a successful @d181 Initiative, but at this time the teachers need to focus their attention on the implementation of the new curriculum. I believe that there has not been enough research into the effectiveness of iPads in the classroom. I encourage the administration to take one step at a time: Common Core first, followed by the incorporation of the right technology for the students."
Sarah Lewensohn: "The question isn’t, should we have IPads? That is just hardware. Adding more pieces of technology will let teachers change how they teach. It will encourage new lesson plans, support problem based learning, increase engagement, and more."
Jill Vorobiev: "I believe that it is important that District 181 remain competitive with respect to its technology initiatives and that this issue needs to be critically examined in light of upcoming curriculum changes. Any technology upgrades should be rolled into these changes and not viewed in isolation. Teachers should have technological resources available to them that they are comfortable using and that can maximize student growth and potential."