Pittsfield students accept Chromebooks for AP march work
September 12, 2017 - chromebook
A sum of 428 students during Pittsfield and Taconic high schools are now enrolled in during slightest one AP class. That’s over a entertain of a stream high propagandize enrollment.
185 of those students, about 43 percent, are now enrolled in some-more than one AP class. One tyro is enrolled in 6 AP classes this year; 6 some-more are enrolled in 5 AP classes this year.
The following 25 AP courses are offering in Pittsfield schools: AB Calculus; BC Calculus; Art Studio; Biology; Chemistry; Computer Science Principles; English Language; English Literature; Environmental Studies; European History; Government Politics; Human Geography; Italian; Latin; Music Theory; Physics; Physics C; Psychology; Research; Seminar; Spanish; Statistics; Studio Art 3D; U.S. History; World History.
PITTSFIELD — Cars lined a length of Appleton Avenue subsequent to Pittsfield High School final Tuesday, and people queued adult in a lobby.
But a throng wasn’t spectators for a girls’ volleyball compare — it was done adult of students and their relatives watchful to accept a new Chromebook device.
A sum of 428 students from Pittsfield and Taconic high schools — scarcely a entertain of a city’s high propagandize race — perceived a new device during no assign for use in Advanced Placement courses. These classes, offering by a high schools by a inhabitant College Board, are designed to be taught during a college turn and pace, so students who attain and accept a high measure on a AP march examination can turn authorised to accept negotiable college credit.
“It’s good for students who wish to get ahead,” pronounced PHS sophomore Madeline Cook, who enrolled in an AP U.S. History category this year.
Cook is among about 260 students from PHS who were given a new Lenovo Yoga Chromebook, that has a built-in keyboad and functions as a laptop computer, and also facilities an 11-inch hinged hold shade that can overlay behind and concede a device to duty like a tablet.
Administrators compulsory adults to sign-off on students’ receipt of a device, so Cook’s mother, Sherry Van Bramer, accompanied her daughter to a placement event. “I consider it’s a good mangle for relatives too,” Van Bramer said. “Parents already have adequate losses with garments and propagandize supplies, so even yet [Cook] has entrance to a laptop during home, this unequivocally helps.”
The educational module once was seen as usually permitted to students who were good off since of compared examination costs: $94 for many exams or $142 per AP Capstone and Computer Science Principles programs.
But over a past several years, a district has partnered with a Mass Math + Science Initiative, a Mass Insight Education module that receives a brew of open and private appropriation and invests in a partner schools to yield AP category support for teachers and students during a subsidized cost. So Pittsfield has been enrolling some-more students who come from economically disadvantaged backgrounds into a program, and providing a additional educational support by training some-more teachers to learn AP courses.
In Berkshire County, Mass Insight Education has formerly partnered with PHS, Taconic, Drury, Hoosac Valley, Wahconah Regional and Lee high schools.
The Pittsfield district now offers 25 AP courses — a top series of any open propagandize district in a county. Once usually open to upperclassmen, a classes are open to students in Grades 9-12 as prolonged as it fits in their report and they can keep adult with a march rigors.
Giving students a 21st century record to support their appearance in college-level educational programs is a subsequent step in assisting them be successful, pronounced Superintendent Jason “Jake” McCandless.
“This unequivocally ties into a district alleviation skeleton and overarching goals to boost tyro engagement,” he said. “We know that there are opposite avenues for all kids in terms of anticipating what helps them to be successful, so we’re anticipating things that will work, and adding some-more collection to their apparatus belt.”
It was adult to Technology Director Randy McLeod to find that apparatus worked best for classroom needs.
“We started this whole thing with a thought of giving students inclination when iPads were popular. Then we began looking into how to use Google in a classroom a small bit more,” McLeod said.
Over a past few years, a district has experimented with what inclination work best for students and teachers in a classroom, quite when it comes to AP courses, that have a aloft volume of work and exam preparations. All of a AP courses and scores are also tracked online.
Previously, AP students were given iPads to use for a generation of a course, though McLeod pronounced students complained about not indeed being means to form adult records and essays since a inclination lacked a earthy keyboard.
So final spring, a district began piloting new inclination in some classes, including Chromebooks, that are built by opposite manufacturers though all are designed to run on Google’s “Chrome” internet browser.
As partial of a long-term vital and district alleviation planning, a district has been looking into how to make a best use of a $1 million bill for technology-related investments this year. The district already subscribes to Google apartment of education-related program and applications famous collectively as “Google Classroom,” so purchasing a concordant Chromebooks only done sense.
McLeod pronounced in comparing costs, investing in a Lenovo Yoga indication by a bulk squeeze was still cheaper than shopping new iPads, so a district gave a squeeze a immature light.
Pittsfield High School youth Isaac Boyd pronounced he formerly used an iPad with an AP History course, though pronounced he prefers carrying a Chromebook this year to take his AP World History and AP English Language courses.
“The iPads were only not ideal for typing essays,” he said. “I consider carrying these are nice, generally for kids who don’t have entrance to anything else. You unequivocally need them since we do have to do a lot of things online.”
Isaac’s mother, Tammy Boyd, also upheld a thought of creation record some-more permitted to all kids, regardless of their socioeconomic background.
“It unequivocally levels a personification field,” she said.
Reach staff author Jenn Smith during 413-496-6239.