Mobile Computing

New Jersey School Implements 1to1 Chromebook Initiative

Eleanor Van Gelder School in Edgewater, NJ is preparing to roll out Chromebooks to all of its grade six students in January.

Edgewater School District has been using educational technology such as Smart Boards, Chromebooks and Google Apps of Education in its classrooms for years, but now it's taking the implementation to the next level by providing all 88 of its grade 6 students and their teachers with a personalized Chromebook, protective case and mouse, which they will be able to use at school and at home until the end of the school year in June, according to a report in the Edgewater View.

As part of the implementation, the district will provide the teachers with professional development on effective use of the devices in the classroom, and it will brief parents on the details of the initiative.

The Chromebooks will use filtering technology to restrict students' access to online content and to restrict email to the school's internal network, so students will only be able to contact each other, their teachers and school staff.

The district is already planning further expansion of its 1-to-1 initiative. Before its current technology plan expires at the end of the current school year, Edgewater may expand the number of iPads at its other school, George Washington School, and it is considering expanding its 1-to-1 technology initiative to include grade five students sometime in the next three years.

While instructional technology is taking on a greater role in the district, Kerry Postma, the superintendent of Edgewater School District, stresses that its role is to support instruction. "We remind teachers: curriculum first and technology if needed," Postma told the Edgewater View. "We use a Chromebook as a tool to carry out content that we want students to obtain but not as the end all, rather as a means to an end."

About the Author

Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at leilameyer@gmail.com.

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