In August of last year, the first phase of the Nampa School District’s plan to increase learning ability through technology began, with nearly 2,000 students attending Columbia High School receiving laptops. The program was designed to allow students to have access to high quality laptops for their learning experience. The laptops can also double as a home computer, as long as the student has the machine with them when they return to school the next day. Currently, close to 2,000 students have laptops, with more to come in the next two years. In fact, the city of Nampa hopes that every student in the district will have a personal laptop by August 2019.
So why the focus on modernization in the classroom? Well according to David Peterson, a Nampa School District superintendent, “It’s about the interaction that kids can have with their world, with their teachers and with each other through digital collaboration.” This means that students will be able to have faster access to online materials, as well as have the ability to email teachers from a device that is their own. And the laptops are, in fact, their own: students keep the laptop for the entire time they are enrolled at Columbia High.
The Nampa District was able to afford all of these laptops because of a highly supported supplemental levy. In other words, a budget increase. The district also charges optional insurance for each laptop, which does nothing but help the funding.
The district is very pleased with the results so far, and are hopeful of the next two years. The funding is there, and with these new laptops learning is taking place at an accelerated rate. From emailing teachers, faster resource gathering, and more project based assignments, it is clear that this new program is working, and continuing it will inspire even greater learning ability.