One-to-one technology for Harford students still has serious flaws [Letter]

Editor:

First and foremost, I and HCEA support improving technology access for Harford County Public Schools students.

However, one-to-one technology deployment is not an efficacious or efficient manner to improve educational outcomes for students.

Besides the obvious concerns over cost, logistics, loss, theft and damage, deploying one-to- one devices — which remain idle a significant period of time during the day and which are kept in the schools overnight — squanders valuable resources.

Furthermore, deployment of one-to-one devices as proposed by HCPS will do little to bridge gaps in equity. Likewise, one-to-one technology cannot and should not supplant use of printed text. Similarly, engaging in ongoing purchases of devices as opposed to leasing, which would yield about twice as many devices for the same cost, seems silly.

Technology should become part of the operating budget which is jointly funded by both state and county government. Deployment of technology should be strategic, ensuring that students have the right devices for the right tasks at the right times.

Without developmentally and pedagogically sensitive deployment which includes timely professional development for teachers and interpolation into existing course work, one-to-one technology for students amounts to little more than very expensive window dressing.

Ryan Burbey, President

Harford County Education Association

The Harford County Education Association represents teachers employed by Harford County Public Schools. Editor

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