In May 2016, Sabin joined 55 other schools around the country who have set out to leverage technology to improve education and create powerful learning. During school year 2016-2017, we rolled out iPads to 769 students, giving them anywhere, anytime access. We faced challenges, wittnessed victories and learned countless lessons. We surveyed our parents, students, and teachers in order to make improvements. It is a learning process, and we are all learning from the students, to the parents, to the teachers, and all the way up to our district It. Change takes time, and improvement takes dedication, reflection, and a desire to do better.
We know students need technology skills in order to prepare them for future jobs and to fully participate in today's society. Before becoming a Verizon Innovative Learning School, students had little access to technology, other than for our online reading program, Achieve3000, and assessments. With all students having tablets, going 1:1, students now have access to information any time, for whatever questions they may have or information they may need. That changes the learning beyond memorizing facts to that of higher-level thinking and solving problems.
Our vision does not include students being glued to screens all day long, every day. The tablets are a tool for learning, for creating, and demonstrating student knowledge. We are working with Digital Promise and D11's Next Generation/Personalized Learning team, using the SAMR model of technology integration to transform learning.
The 2017-2018 school year marks our second and final year of the Verizon Innovative Learning School grant. This means the devices will stay at Sabin, but Verizon will not be providing 5GB of data each month.