10 Balt. Co. elementaries to pilot digital conversion in 2014

Ten Baltimore County elementary schools, including three in the Towson area, were announced Friday as the "lighthouse" schools that will pilot BCPS' instructional digital conversion next year with individual learning devices for each student and new classroom techniques.

Among the schools are Rodgers Forge Elementary School in Towson, the new elementary school in Mays Chapel, and Halstead Academy in Parkville.


According to a BCPS news release, Superintendent Dallas Dance announced the initiative in 2012 as part of his efforts to bring the county school system into the 21st century with its teaching and learning techniques, as well as its physical facilities.

Schools were asked earlier this year whether their teachers would be interested in piloting the program, and schools with high interest levels among staff were put through an application process.


Other schools participating include Chase Elementary and Hawthorne Elementary in Middle River, Church Lane Elementary in Randallstown, Edmondson Heights Elementary in Woodlawn, Joppa View Elementary in White Marsh, and Lansdowne Elementary.

"By embracing this exciting initiative, the principals of these schools, their staffs and their school communities become instant innovators, creators and learners in the future of education," Dance said in a statement. "As our digital learning pioneers, they will show all of us how the schools and classrooms of tomorrow – and the educators in each of them – will ensure that each child is ready for the 21st-century world that awaits them."

The digital conversion comes on the heels of this year's conversion to the Common Core curriculum standards, as well as changes in standardized testing and teacher evaluations.

The name and logo for the full digital conversion, which was developed by BCPS high school students, will be unveiled via video news conference at 2 p.m. Friday, Jan. 10 at BCPS-TV studios in the Carver Center for Arts and Technology in Towson.

BCPS will hold a kickoff celebration for the program at 12 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 21, also at the Carver Center. The celebration will include remarks from Dance, BCPS Digital Learning Executive Director Ryan Imbriale, and Hall Davidson, a speaker from Discovery Education.