∞ Florida school trades textbooks for iPads

Orlando Sentinel:

“When students at the new Lake Minneola High School in Lake County return to classes in a few weeks, they’ll have access to more than half a million dollars worth of new iPads that they’ll use at school and at home.“Lake Minneola will be is the first public school in Central Florida to buy the devices for every student as part of a state pilot program to save on textbooks and offer a new dimension in learning for students.”

In the current economic climate, forward-thinking schools looking to employ technology effectively for their students are faced with a dilemma: how to get the most bang for a dwindling amount of bucks? The iPad certainly helps – as long as curriculums, faculty training and IT policies are tailored accordingly.



  • Crisrod63

    Two proven ways to educate young humans. Good parents, good teachers. Forget about everything else. Sure, the iPad can be engaging but it can also be distracting. You still need the dedicated teacher at the helm.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_6LZ6R53NN2CEFSNRBVHKFWSEUU Magenta

      The point is the high cost of printed textbooks, vs the far less expensive digital ebooks.

      Plus, computers in education also allow for handouts to be emailed as PDFs, for tests to be delivered online, for presentations and lectures to be available to the students for review, for access to additional course materials from all over the world- countless benefits that far outweigh any distraction from Angry Birds.

      • Joe King

        You mistaken about a large cost savings, the printing and shipping costs are minimal compared to the R&D, copyright licensing, professional development etc. The hidden cost to digital books is expansion and maintenance of the infrastructure and delivery systems. Equity of access is a large hurdle to be tackled.

        I am strongly in the camp for expanding the use of digital instruction in the classroom, but we are being shortsighted and mistaken if we think there will be a significant cost savings.

      • Joe King

        You mistaken about a large cost savings, the printing and shipping costs are minimal compared to the R&D, copyright licensing, professional development etc. The hidden cost to digital books is expansion and maintenance of the infrastructure and delivery systems. Equity of access is a large hurdle to be tackled.

        I am strongly in the camp for expanding the use of digital instruction in the classroom, but we are being shortsighted and mistaken if we think there will be a significant cost savings.

  • http://twitter.com/Moeskido Moeskido

    Dedicated teachers are the constant in any proper educational environment. But in this story, if the iPad can enable savings in book licensing costs, it’s potentially a good long-term change.

  • Bryce22

    Id love to see how they are gonna prevent facebook from taking over english class 

    • jaberg

      A technical solution is to block Facebook on the school network.

      The better alternative is to provide interesting and compelling educational content.

      The reality is that “Facebook” is just the latest form of distraction. I spent many an English class with a Heinlein novel hidden between the covers of whatever we were supposed to be studying. (Still managed to do okay in school).

      Bottom line, students will engage with varying levels of intensity–for a variety of reasons. Facebook is a concern, but Internet attached “living textbooks” offer a world of possibilities to build interest and make studies relevant. Good educators will rise to the challenge and the mediocre will continue to hide behind the protection of tenure and union.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1463805713 Eric Tyira

      You know where the students are and when during the school day.  Just block all websites except the teacher plans to use during that particular time for that particular user account.