Chromebooks replace computer labs

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The computer labs in the 300 and 700 halls have been closed down and four Chromebook carts have taken their place. The two former labs now stand as classrooms.

Although having the four carts instead of just two labs would ideally improve the competition for computer time, other issues have now arisen.

One such difficulty is transporting the carts through crowded hallways.

“Labs have to be moved if they’re mobile. They may have to get across campus by the next period,” said Assistant Principal Jesse Hansen.

A solution for this is to space out the location of the carts around campus so teachers will be able to sign up for the cart nearest them. Some possible locations for the carts are the 100 and 300 halls and two in the 700 hall.

The Chromebooks are definitely more updated than the computers in the labs were, and students can even connect to the school’s wireless network on them, but they lack printing capabilities. It’s possible for students to share and turn in documents via Google Docs, but it’s a hassle for teachers who need hard copies of their students’ work.

“One of the issues that have been stressing English teachers out is they can’t hand edit or peer review documents shared in Google Docs. They’d have to print them all out,” said Hansen.

“In the long run, as we move away from paper, it’ll be easier.”

According to Hansen, copying and printing is one of the school’s highest expenses.

A benefit to the Chromebook carts is that there are now more computers available for students. Each cart carries around 36 Chromebooks, and with four of those plus the media lab, which is still in use, it has been slightly easier to sign up for them.

“The idea is to get every student a computer. Eventually everyone can have their own,” said teacher Jeffrey Goldstein.

“The Chromebooks are really cool. I love how teachers are willing to incorporate computers into learning, something that will inevitably be done because of this technological revolution,” said senior Carmen Hom. “It immediately makes everyone more interested in the activity.”

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