In San Gabriel Valley, California, the teachers and principals of Bassett Unified school district received a Christmas present right before the holidays. According to the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, the school district issued more than 200 tablets to its educators before their holiday break so they could spend time with the devices before they implement the new technology into the classroom.
Alex Rojas, superintendent for Bassett Unified, explained the teachers would use the tablet to run daily lessons, as the plan is for each student to have his or her own device, the source reported. However, the district wants the educators to get used to the devices before they are implemented.
Rojas said he wanted to get the school district caught up with the latest technologies because several neighboring school districts have already made the push for tablets in the classroom.
A recent report from Google's official blog explained that tablet and laptop devices are getting more popular than ever for educational settings. The report added the most in-demand device is the Google Chromebook because it's easy to use and manage in the classroom setting.
Google said in counties such as Montgomery County, Maryland, there were more than 50,000 Chromebook devices sold for educational purposes in 2014.
Bassett Unified educators get choice of iPad or Surface
The Bassett Unified teachers had a chance to vote on which device they would like to take home with them for the holidays as well. According to the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, educators had the choice of the Apple iPad or the Microsoft Surface.
Tom Covington, vice president for the Bassett Teachers Association, explained that roughly 70 percent the administrators at the school chose the iPad, while the rest picked up the Surface.
Rojas said the holiday break gives educators a great time to get a grasp on the tablet devices they chose, the source reported.
"We did it before the Christmas break because our goal is for them to use it, get familiar with it in a relaxed environment at home," said Rojas, according to the source. "We want it to be low anxiety - we don't want to scare those teachers who might be a bit nervous about it - but at the same time, we kind of want to let loose those teachers who are early adopters."
The program will cost the school district approximately $120,000 for the 200 tablets. However, the non-profit Bassett Education Foundation took care of the majority of the bill with funds saved up for new tablet devices. According to the source, the school district also recently passed a new bond in November that will use $30 million to upgrade classrooms with touch-screen projectors, modular desks and improved workstations for teachers to run a technology-based classroom.
According to eLearning Industry, schools are using cloud-based technologies in the classroom, but there are privacy concerns . Cloud technologies increase vulnerability, but most schools are educating their students on how to be safe with the devices to protect information.
Additionally, schools should look to personal insurance to protect students' tablets in case the devices are broken, stolen or lost.