Superintendent: ‘It’s a big deal nationally’
Oak Ridge Schools is attempting to become the premier district in the nation for science, technology, engineering, and math, or STEM, education. Superintendent Bruce Borchers has a $3.4 million plan to make that happen using Microsoft Surface tablets and Discovery Education. The money will be spent over a five-year period.
Borchers calls the needed changes a “digital transformation” that will, he hopes, bring a tablet to every student in the school system. This is especially important in Oak Ridge, a district with a free and reduced lunch rate of more than 50 percent. The digital transformation would allow every student in the district to have the same educational opportunities, regardless of income.
The first of three steps toward transformation is to create a technological infrastructure capable of handling all the tablets. Those improvements have a $1 million price tag that the Oak Ridge Board of Education and the city have already approved. Borchers hopes for the upgrades to be completed before students return to school in the fall. The upgrades are projected to last until at least 2022. [Read more…]