When classes for the 2012-13 school year officially begin at Burt Elementary School in the Waterford School District on Tuesday, Sept. 4, each of its 14 classrooms will have an iPad waiting for teachers and students to use.
All the iPads were purchased with privately-raised funds.
“Teachers at Burt and I had a dream to have at least one iPad in every classroom for teacher and student use on a daily basis,” said Mary Barghahn, the principal of Burt Elementary. “The Burt (Parent-Teacher Organization) and the Burt Student Council raised a lot of money to purchase nine iPads.”
Burt also recently received a $1,000 grant from the Waterford Optimist Club to go toward the purchase of additional iPads.
Barghahn said that every iPad purchase includes a projector for images to be shown on a screen in a classroom. The cost was about $1,000 each.
“The camera then becomes an overhead projector where videos can be taken, such as showing students’ awesome behavior,” she said. “We’re just getting into the full swing. With the iPads, teachers can download an app and everyone can learn, be it handwriting, spelling, math or biographies.”
Some Burt classrooms utilized iPads in the previous school year and Barghahn said that other iPads were purchased over the spring.
She added that the school also holds a special “Appy Hour” prior to the start of the school year in which Burt teachers can demonstrate the apps that they have downloaded and will utilize with their students.
The addition of iPads at Burt coincides with the Waterford Schools Board of Education approving the purchase and installation of SMART boards in every district kindergarten classroom through a $75,009 contract with SMART Ed Services for 33 wide profile, dual touch SMART boards; and a $65,277 contract with Dell for SMART boards with a S500 projector, boom mount and bulb.