New Providence High School Students Equipped with iPads
Monday, February 11, 2013 • 10:13am
NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ – Expanding on its position as the state’s number one rated high school, New Providence High School has made a bold more to expand learning opportunities for students in a 21st Century learning environment.
Schools Superintendent Dr. David Miceli said that as early as today, (Feb.11) all freshmen through juniors will receive an Apple iPad. Due to the near completion of the academic year, seniors will not receive the devices.
“Mid-year deployment made sense to eliminate seniors since they had less than half a year left,” Miceli said. Starting in September of 2013, all 620 students will be equipped with the iPads.
Students will have access to their mobile devices throughout the school day as well as at home to support their learning styles, interests and needs.
Miceli added that the school district wanted the students to immerse themselves in the device to achieve its fullest capacity.
“From an instructional perspective it really felt it was important for them to be able to use it at all times – between classes, lunch period, after school and take it home,” he said.
The devices will provide teachers with many more opportunities to instruct and give students additional ways of learning. There are also tremendous opportunities for students with special needs and special learning styles.
“It’ll kind of help level the playing field for a number of our students.” Miceli said.
According to an internal memorandum the three year lease/purchase agreement will cost the school district $345,291. Insurance for the devices will be paid by the students and insurance for teachers will be paid by the school district.
Miceli said that in the past, the school district had purchased technology on a five-year cycle but with the newness of the iPad and quickly changing technology, it would be more financially prudent to lease the devices for three years.
Providing students with the new devices is only the tip of the iceberg. Planning, staff training and massive changes to the infrastructure began last summer.
In June, Apple Core Members were provided with iPads and participated in an introductory workshop. In July and August, remaining teachers were provided with the devices and attended a two-hour training session.
That was followed by two full-days of training conducted by Apple specialists in September.
The new iPad initiative also required major expansion of the wireless infrastructure which began in June.
The density of access points was increased from one per two classrooms to one for every classroom. The auditorium and cafeteria were each increased to three access points.
Hardware and software that manages the wireless network was upgraded. By October, all classrooms were installed with video matrix switches to make it easier for teachers to connect an iPad to the classroom projector.