The district is in the process of purchasing about 450 Chromebooks, which is estimated to cost about $95,000 after an expected rebate of almost $35,000.
Superintendent Bob Szymoniak said the devices will be paid for through the state’s Durant Fund, which is earmarked for technology.
“Students are much more engaged in course matter through the use of technology than they are with textbooks,” Szymoniak said.
The program expansion comes on the heels of a yearlong Chromebook pilot program involving classrooms at Fruitport middle and high schools, as well as a one-classroom iPad program at Beach Elementary School.
Currently, the district isn’t looking to purchase additional iPads because of the cost, but they are looking into other tablets that could work for younger students, Szymoniak said.
In the upcoming school year, two classrooms per Fruitport elementary school – Beach, Edgewood and Shettler – three classes at Fruitport Middle School and two classes at Fruitport High School, will have Chromebooks. Additional devices will be purchased for classrooms to sign out and use.
Jeff Grossenbacher, the technology director for Fruitport Community Schools, said the expansion targets grades 3-12. He said the program isn’t a true 1-to-1 initiative because the devices stay in the selected classrooms, and students use the devices throughout the day.
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