November 24, 2014

Medina
Mostly cloudy
54°F

Medina Schools buys $300K worth of Apple laptops for hands-on learning

The Medina school board expanded the district’s Project-Based Learning program by agreeing Monday to buy 265 Apple laptop computers at a cost of $300,729.60.

The price includes AppleCare Protection Plans for each of the MacBook Pros and eight Bretford Mobility Carts.

Last year, the school board agreed to pay $228,619.70 to lease 190 MacBooks for three years with an option to purchase the computers for $1 each.

But that provided computers for less than half of the students in the Project-Based Learning program, which stresses hands-on educational activities as an alternative to traditional classroom teaching, school officials said.

Thanks to the new machines, all of the elementary schools will have access to the laptops, said Kristine Quallich, the district’s director of educational services. Quallich said the additional computers will be provided to some classrooms at the middle and high schools.

Board Vice President Doug Adamczyk said the MacBook Pros were chosen because “they have better-suited apps for the teachers and students to use for Project-Based Learning.”

In other action Monday, the school board approved 2 percent raises for 39 administrators for the 2014-15 school year.

District Treasurer David Chambers said the raises will cost between $60,000 and $65,000.

Board President Tom Cahalan noted, “Over the past four years they had a freeze on their salary.”

The board also approved the software license agreement between Medina High School and Cleveland State University for the Discover Medina App.

Medina High School teacher Shannon Conley and her students created the app that marks the historic places in Medina and gives background on them. The project was funded by the Stephenson Foundation.

Contact reporter Katie Anderson at (330) 721-4012 or kanderson@medina-gazette.com.