When school starts this fall at River Dell Regional High School in New Jersey every single freshman will be issued a Tablet PC and training on the use of it for all school work. The program is ambitious in scope with each subsequent freshman class receiving them each year until every single student (all 950) will have Tablets. Earlier this year all 140 teachers and administrators at the school received Tablet PCs and were trained in the best way to integrate them into the classroom. The school intends to use electronic text books to minimize the items that students have to carry each day. The Tablets will have special security devices to track lost and stolen devices and the district has replacement devices if they are needed.
Teachers and administrators say they believe the new laptops will improve instruction at the school, allowing students to get better feedback on their work and making it nearly impossible for them to claim they forgot their paper at home or the dog ate their homework.
"No ‘I lost my paper; I left it in my locker.’ It’s all here," said English teacher Susan Carney. She said she will be able to use the tablet PCs to write corrections on students’ papers and leave them voice notes about their work, enabling the students to make more revisions in their writing.
"In the past, when they staple a paper it’s done," Carney said. "Now it’s a work in progress." She said many students don’t realize how important revision is to the writing process. "They don’t realize writers do that."
This is a great program that I hope will be repeated all over the US and elsewhere.