by Galatzan Gazette Staff | http://bit.ly/PBmIbL
Wednesday, September 19, 2012 at 2:31PM :: On Wednesday Superintendent John Deasy unveiled a vision to get tablet technology into the hands of every Los Angeles Unified School District student in order to support the Common Core State Standards, which will be introduced in 2014.
Deasy presented his vision to the Bond Oversight Committee, along with his rationale, and the outlines of a roadmap. Deasy will bring details to the Los Angeles County School Board(!) on Oct 9. He hopes to use bond money to fund the technology, which is why he first presented his vision to the Bond Oversight Committee.
“We are in the process of transforming teaching and learning in Los Angeles,” Deasy told the committee. He explained that under the new Common Core State Standards concepts from algebra to chemistry would be threaded through all grade levels, starting in kindergarten. He said the teaching concepts would be fewer, deeper, and more linked to real world problems. Within three years, he said, CSTs will be phased out, Common Core State Standards will be phased in, and all testing will be electronic.
Deasy wants to begin rolling out the technology to all 660,000 students within the next 15 months.
Use of tablets for all students will be initially piloted at 13 high schools dubbed “Schools for the Future.” One of those is the Valley Academy of Arts and Sciences, in Board District 3. Schools were chosen because they were new schools that were designed and built to teach this way.
Bond Committee members expressed both excitement and caution about the vision, and peppered the superintendent with questions. They submitted more in a written memo.
Barry Waite, a parent and BOC representative urged the district to be sure they are not “trendy.” As a professor who works with technology in his classes, he also said often bandwidth does not keep up with classroom needs.
He also urged the district to think carefully about how they order. Often when large organizations place an order it is for the newest technology, but by the time it arrives it is already outdated, or replacement parts hard to come by.
Another BOC member asked if students will be able to take the tablets home. (“Portability is an unanswered question at the moment,” said Deasy.)
And a third BOC member cautioned the district to be careful about ordering all the tablets from one company.
One BOC member, also asked if the technology is driving the pedagogy. Deasy said no. The Common Core Standards are.
Details of the “Common Core Technology Project Plan” will come before the School Board on Oct. 9. On October 17 the Superintendent will return to the Bond Oversight Committee with a revised Strategic Executive Plan (!).
| smf: One doubts how much the Galatzan Gazette Staff Writer knows about the subject. |