COLUMBIA CITY — Changes in technology have affected almost every sphere of life, with education being no exception.
Whitley County Consolidated Schools (WCCS) has looked at changes in how it purchases curriculum. The district, as it examines textbooks, also examines the software present. This has led to conversations regarding the future of technology for WCCS.
“You can look at things and say this is fabulous, and think you can do great things, but applied to larger scale it does not work with our hardware,” said Dr. Pat O’Connor, WCCS superintendent.
Currently the district has computers in labs and classrooms. O’Connor said it is possible for WCCS to purchase enough laptops to one day have a one-to-one ratio with equipment and students, but that event will not happen immediately.
Until then, there are many hurdles to overcome. Funding is a large issue. Another hurdle will be the support for the hardware.
Technology challenges also apply to where the district is at currently with curriculum. The district has had a textbook committee for many years consisting of administrators, faculty and parents. With advances in technology, special education teachers and the technology director are now included. Some textbooks adopted for use by the committee have accompanying software, which also brings about challenges.
The superintendent said it is possible one day the district will not even have textbooks, just software. That is a long way off, though. First, the hardware needs to come to the district, and with it training and knowledge.
There is a group of students in the WCCS district who are currently testing out the idea of one laptop per child.
The future could include much more technology and WCCS. But O’Connor was quick to not jump to conclusions and pointed out that, while this may be in the cards for the district, it will take time.
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