Final preparations made for Cape Central H.S. personal devices

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - It's becoming a trend across the Heartland, students to use electronic devices instead of books and pencils.

Shannon Holifield with Sikeston High School said the devices there have improved learning, and said students are more engaged.

Now, students at Cape Central should see a similar program roll out next week.

"I think it was a good decision I mean I liked it from the beginning when I saw it," said Cape Central Junior Madeleine McDonald.

McDonald was on the committee to help pick the new devices to be used at the high school as part of the 1:1 program.

Now, tech experts are programming passwords, checking inventory and charging batteries for more than 1,200 portable computers expected to go to high school students.

"It's been challenging," said Zach Deneke.

It's been in the works for almost two years, and now the devices are ready to go out.

School officials decided on a new model with new software, but still within the budget.

It has a battery life of 11 hours, and a touch screen tablet that detaches from the keyboard.

"Having a keyboard will allow them to type papers and do all the manual stuff, but if they're sitting there reading, they don't have to have the keyboard attached, they can sit there and read the screen like a normal E-reader," said David Pepon.

The tech team is blocking inappropriate websites this week, to prepare for the roll out on January 7.

"Those types of sites that we do not let kids access during the school day will not be accessible at night either," said Cape School Assistant Superintendent Sherry Copeland.

Madeleine's dad, Kyle McDonald is a member of the school board that voted to approve the program. He said he's excited about the initiative.

"It's just nice to have a whole world opened up to them on a computer, as opposed to being stuck to within the limits of a text book," said McDonald.

"We don't have to carry around the text books and all that stuff, and we have it all in place," said Madeleine McDonald.

"We're trying to play catch up them, trying to reach them where they learn best," said Copeland.

A support technician will be stationed at the school just in case the students need help.

It's all part of the preparation for next week, that really aims to last the students a lifetime.

"There are very few jobs out there right now that do not require an intense knowledge of technology," said Copeland.

The Cape Central students will get their devices when they go back to school on Tuesday.

A big question we keep hearing, what happens if a student loses or breaks their device?

Copeland said they can buy an insurance policy for $25 that will cover up to $400 to fix or replace the computer.

You can see more about the device and program here.

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