First U.S. school goes iPad; Minnesota district buys hundreds of Apple iPads

invisibleSHIELD case for iPad“It seemed Gibbon Fairfax Winthrop (GFW) High School students couldn’t get enough of the new iPad computers Thursday in Principal Jeff Bertrang’s office,” Fritz Busch reports for The New Ulm Journal (Minnesota).

“One student played the piano with a shortened keyboard on her iPad,” Busch reports. “Another student read a book on his iPad. Another student listened to Spanish words. Bertrang pointed out how definitions of words could be found on the iPad… ‘Students won’t have to buy $100 calculators anymore either,’ Bertrang added.”

“The iPad – a wireless, touch screen, tablet-sized computer – was released in early April by Apple Inc.,” Busch reports. “The school district allocated $267,748 to its technology fund to become what is believed to be the first school in the country to have the devices at a cost of $479 each.”

Busch reports, “The money will be used to buy 320 iPads with extended, two-year warranties for students and staff, create Wi-Fi (wireless) infrastructure including routers and access points plus professional development (staff training).”

“Bertrang said the school has only received a small number of iPads so far but expects to get all 320 before the current school year ends,” Busch reports. “iPads will be distributed to teachers this spring. Summer staff development workshops will be used to decide how iPads will be integrated into classroom curriculum.”

Busch reports, “Educational technology and K-12 online learning consultant David Glick said iPads are capable of replacing textbooks and calculators while offering online research capacity.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Boom! The first of many to come.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “jax44” for the heads up.]

32 Comments

  1. High school students will inevitably use it to surf for porn, heck my friend found her 10 yr old son searching for “boobs”.

    Personally I don’t really care but I know some parents are going to be irate and hire lawyers. I wonder what’s being done regarding this.

  2. The dominoes are falling, and over the next few years they will begin to fall faster and faster.

    No one can stop them now!

    @ twilightmoon–

    Any kid that would use an iPad to surf for porn, is already doing so now with the Internet anyway.

    This isn’t anything new.

    If parents are concerned about that, they need to take personal responsibility as parents and be involved in their kids’ lives.

  3. My kid carries a backpack full of books.

    All of those books could be on an iPad.

    All text books have errors and need to be updated.

    School book publishers really need to invest in the iPad.

  4. What it will come down to is what can the school cripple or restrict vs. what it is used for.

    Start with a blank screen. Add the textbooks, calculator, iWork and any other tools needed. They could easily restrict the stuff they do not need as an educational tool.

    How this is going to be done will be very interesting.

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