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    Board Policy No. 0030 states 8 promises the district shall work towards to achieve Educational and Racial Equity for our students. The first promise, Equitable Access is directly addressed in the proposed student computer refresh to support Teaching and Learning. The promise states The district shall provide every student with equitable access to a high-quality curriculum, support, facilities and other educational resources, even when this means differentiating resource allocation.

    To that end, DoTS is proposing a student technology refresh to ensure equitable access for every student. In conjunction with the Technology Plan, and Strategic Plan, this refresh would apply BTA IV Capital Levy funds towards maintaining a baseline of devices on a four-year replacement cycle centrally managed and funded. Maintaining an accurate inventory of devices helps to determine an equitable baseline of technology at schools. The Weighted Staffing Standards and current High School Education Specification call for high schools to have a 1:1 which would enable students to be properly equipped for future curriculum adoptions involving digital materials and college and career. Furthermore, moving from a cart-based model to student based/curriculum model will help to unlock the potential of all students, allowing for them to become empowered learners who collaborate with others and are enriched through increased access to digital materials.


    What is Technology to Support Teaching and Learning (TSTL)?

    • To meet the SPS Strategic Plan goal of High Quality Instruction and Learning Experiences, the Department of Technical Services (DoTS) is proposing a student technology refresh to ensure equitable access to technology for each student. This includes maintaining a baseline of devices on a four-year replacement cycle that is centrally managed and funded.

    What is the 1:1 student laptop program?

    • Nested under the TSTL initiative, 1:1 represents the ratio of computers to students. In this program, each high school student would be assigned a laptop to use in school and take home for the year.

      1. The laptops would be checked out at the beginning of school and would be returned to the school at the end of the school year, similar to a textbook.
      2. Some programs may keep the laptops at school for check-out for the day.

    What are the other programs under TSTL?

    • Over the next five years, besides the technology device baseline, the District is proposing the following:

      1. New guidelines for School Tech budgets with the Information Technology Advisory Committee (ITAC) and Teaching & Learning setting guidelines with accountability.
      2. Technology for schools linked to Continuous School Improvement Plan (CSIP) goals, Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) EdTech Standards, and the Seattle Public Schools Principles of Effective Digital Learning.
      3. Funding for Special Education, Assistive Tech, ADA Accessibility, CTE, STEM, ELA, PE & Arts.
      4. Funds for Equity with a focus on Professional Learning.

    Why is TSTL important?

    •  Teachers and Students need technology to support, amplify, and accelerate the processes of teaching and learning. Technology goes beyond automation and makes it possible for students and teachers to access real-world resources, content, experts, and problems using the same or similar technologies that professionals use.
    •  Teachers can leverage technology to differentiate information to the needs of students as they engage in rigorous learning where they create new knowledge and information relevant to the content being studied, as well as their lives, interests, and experiences.

    How much will the 1:1 program cost SPS annually?

    • $3 million annually.

    How are the student laptops being funded?

    • The voters approved funding for student technology in the BTA IV levy in February 2016. $16M for student devices was approved, of which $14M is still available for this program.

    Aren't you concerned about screen time for children?

    • Screen time management is a key issue for parents and teachers in our district. However, not all screen time is created equal. Technology by itself cannot teach students the critical skills needed to compete and succeed in our changing modern world. Teacher and parent engagement in selecting rich educational content, training students in new ways to create using technology, and assisting them to navigate the information available on the World Wide Web is critical to this program and to helping students become savvy, experienced digital citizens. We are focusing on helping students become creators of information and content, not just passive consumers.

    Are these devices intended to replace teachers?

    • Absolutely not. Teachers are critical to helping students learn how to navigate a world that is full of technology. Teachers can help students learn what is reputable information and what is not, provide assignments that test a student's ability to locate reliable information, and assist students in creating and using electronic media. Technology in schools doesn't work without teachers.

    What if students use the laptops to visit inappropriate sites?

    • The laptops will have content filters which limit the sites that may be accessed.  

    Deployment Schedule

    What schools are included in this proposal?

    • All 102 schools in the Seattle Public School District are included in this proposed action.

    What is the timing of the deployment?

    • This is a phased deployment.  We will roll out these devices with priority placed on high schools that are in the most need of technical support, based on the SPS strategic goal of providing learning experiences that accelerate growth for students of color who are furthest from educational justice.  That means that we are starting with WSS Tier 1,2, and 3 schools.
    • Franklin, Rainier Beach, Chief Sealth, Seattle World School, Cleveland and Lincoln will receive devices first with remaining high schools receiving devices between November and January.  Every year after, high schools will receive laptops for their incoming freshmen class, completing their 1:1 initiative over 4 years.
    • Devices will arrive in middle and elementary schools late Fall and throughout the year with tier-1 schools given priority. 

    Support and Professional Development

    How will schools ensure technology is managed and taken care of properly?

    • Prior to devices being deployed, schools will need to develop a readiness plan for technology management and teacher and student readiness.  The Digital Learning team is developing training materials to aid in the planning and will be provided to school administrators during the School Leaders Institute.

    What Support will be provided to staff to ensure the technology is fully leveraged?

    • The Education Technology leader (ET) position is a certificated, non-supervisory staff member that will support each school with the help of building leadership and Digital Learning Specialists to improve teaching and learning through education technology.  Currently, 100 schools have identified a staff member who will commit to 25 hours per school year of training, presenting at staff meetings and meeting with teachers individually.  Additionally, ET's will participate in 7 hours of personal development and planning to ensure their work is supporting the foundational work of their schools.

    Repair and Maintenance 

    How will you handle breakage?

    • The student will be given a loaner laptop while theirs is fixed.
    • Broken laptops will be repaired at the Depot, covered by the $25 collected from all students in the 1:1 program.
    • There will be an added pool of 3% (based on enrollment) laptops  kept at the schools for swaps.

    What will happen if a laptop is stolen?

    • The process will follow the District's lost/stolen procedure, and will be replaced with funds collected from the students.  








    "I do not have a laptop at home.  I had no computers in Eritrea.  If we can have laptops and I want to do extra work, I can do it at home instead of going to the library.  It is sometimes full at the library.  I would like to be able to practice at home".  -  ELL Student at Franklin High School

    "Laptops will help me - my computer at home doesn't work well.  For some students they don't have a computer and they need to take it home to work.  It will be more easy to learn if we can take the computer home".  - ELL Student at Franklin High School

    "We spend more time on the phone.  If we have laptops - we focus more on school.  The phone is too small.  Laptops are more useful for education and some students don't have them".  - ELL Student at Franklin High School

    First of all, I would like to thank the district for the opportunity to have 1:1 laptop program at Cleveland STEM High School.  Even though we have the program, there are some flaws such as some educational websites and scholarship links are blocked.  When students access ECHO (Cleveland's online portal to check grades, attendance, assignments, and more) and download an assignment, a notification pops up preventing students from accessing these online assignments.  

    "However, there are still many advantages of being given access to laptops.  We can use them at home and school in class.  It reduces the amount of paperwork that we have at our school, it saves trees, and students won't break their backs with all the textbooks in their backpacks.  This has greatly affected my education whether it helped me through accessing grades, responding to emails, answering questions on Khan Academy, writing essays, and filling out college scholarships and applications.  I ask the district to keep up with technology and incorporating laptops at all other high schools in the district.  I want the other high schools to have the same opportunity to have laptops for their educational purposes". 

     - Student at Cleveland STEM High School