By AMY RICKER
Great Bend Post
If you have a child starting Kindergarten or first grade this fall in Great Bend, instead of the iPads, those grades will be using Chromebooks like all other grades at USD 428.
The district has a three-year rotation cycle for Chromebooks to maintain up-to-date technology, but the kindergarten and 1st-grade classes have been using iPads.
Superintendent Khris Thexton says the Chromebook platform does not allow a seamless user experience with the Apple tablets.
"I can take your Chromebook, you log out, hand it to John and he can login into it and access his thing on the same machine," said Thexton. "iPads are not as user friendly when it comes to our use and what we need them for."
Thexton says having the K-1 classes on the same Chromebook platform will make it easier for students and teachers to manage and make the transition to 2nd grade smoother from a technology perspective.
The district will purchase 500 Lenovo Chromebook tablets at $230 apiece and 500 Google device management licenses at $24 apiece for a total of $127,000.
Thexton says this purchase is not an extra expense as it was the end of the cycle for the existing iPads to be phased out.