Tech Initiatives

East Whittier School District Equips First and Second Graders and Teachers with 1,400 Chromebooks


East Whittier City School District in Whittier, CA is equipping first and second grade students and teachers with more than 1,400 Chromebooks to expand student access to high-quality content and instruction, improve student learning and narrow the achievement gap.

The new technology — added under a multi-year initiative — is designed to strengthen achievement on grade-level California standards by increasing critical thinking, problem solving, collaborative and multimedia research opportunities, according to a news release.

The 2:1 Technology Learning Initiative, as it's dubbed, was launched in 2015-2016 to place a digital device in the hands of every two students. In the first year, Chromebooks and Chromebook carts went to students in third grade through middle school.

With the Chromebooks, students can work collaboratively via Google Classroom, a learning platform that allows teachers to create, review, grade and provide feedback on automatically submitted assignments by students. Teachers can also create essays and presentations to support classroom learning.

“These tools are enabling our students to learn in relevant, real-world contexts,” Assistant Superintendent of Education Support Services Gabriela Tavitian said in a statement. “Our students will gain 21st century skills while becoming familiar with technology needed for our state testing.”

The district will continue to provide teacher training through a technology coach and site tech leaders to maintain best practices for integrating technology into instruction, the release said.

About the Author

Richard Chang is associate editor of THE Journal. He can be reached at [email protected].