Enterprise IT major Dell is supporting Roanoke County Public School District in expanding digital education.
For the past 11 years, Roanoke County Public Schools in Virginia has partnered with Dell to grow its 1:1 laptop initiative, now reaching 6,000 high school students across five schools, and providing laptops to 1,600 instructional staff members.
“Roanoke County’s approach shows us that creating the learning environments of the future will require more than just new materials or technologies, but a fundamental shift in the way we think about and approach educating students,” said Jon Phillips, director of Global Education at Dell, said Dell in a statement.
In another example, Hidden Valley High School became the first school in Western Virginia to provide laptops to its students in 2012. After a pilot providing Dell Latitude laptops to incoming freshman, RCPS worked with Dell to identify appropriate laptops and IT infrastructure.
Each incoming freshman student at Roanoke County Public Schools receives their own new Dell Latitude laptop with Windows 7, which is pre-loaded with Microsoft Office 2010, curriculum software including titles for math and science, and learning tools like Blackboard Learn and Blackboard Collaborate.
The technology and associated tools allow students to pursue their unique academic interests and support learning inside and outside of the classroom. These tools allow students to access more than 90 percent of their textbooks on their laptops.
Each Latitude laptop has also been optimized to facilitate collaborative learning. Using education applications like Blackboard Learn, students can engage with content and take learning beyond the classroom. This creates an immersive, two-way learning experience and empowers students to be better prepared for college and career readiness.
To support this thriving digital ecosystem, RCPS employs a team of 17 IT professionals and 14 instructional technology resource teachers who are responsible for implementing the entire technology program, across the district’s 27 schools.
Also, an instructional resources manager guides the digital textbook conversion process. With Dell’s help, the district has built infrastructure to support technology in and out of the classroom, while managing operational expenditures and staff time.
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