Thank you to Sonja Isger , Education Reporter from Palm Beach Post, for this inspiring story featuring the brilliance of Palm Beach County School's leaders. We are proud to share this story for SMART readers worldwide.
Great Read From Palm Beach Post: How The District's Purchase Of 11,000 Interactive Displays Turned Out Brilliantly
Highlights Of This EdTech Success Story
Resilience In The Face Of Pandemic:
"Palm Beach County school leaders say a plan hatched years ago to jack up the tech quotient of every classroom by funneling tens of millions into computers large and small, and extensive training to use them, has delivered something no one predicted: resilience in the face of a pandemic."
Teachers Are "Trailblazers"
Palm Beach County "relied not on a pre-packaged system but on Google Classroom and, as the district has boasted, the nation’s largest cadre of Google-certified teachers trained to navigate lesson delivery through its platform and help their colleagues do the same.
The district labeled the teacher trainers “Trailblazers” and as part of the incentive to dive deeper digitally, Trailblazers also earned priority in the rollout of classroom sets of Chromebooks — one for every student. (This move, combined with broader ongoing efforts, pushed the district closer to a 1-to-1 ratio of laptops to students well before the coronavirus made that goal a must.)"
"It Has Changed How I Teach"
"That's the transformation that people in curriculum and those in IT were aiming for when they first collaborated on the district's digital future."
"Teacher and designated Trailblazer Pattie Hart downright gushes about the (SMART) technology that allowed her to abandon traditional white boards and projectors — and on most days, paper and pencils — in her classroom...
Hart’s students can work on their computers and post collaborative work to the SMART panel. In pre-COVID times, kids with fine motor skill challenges were drawn to write on the panel and manipulate what’s on the screen with a touch."