Thursday, May 10, 2007

Mac It Is!

Well, we did it. We chose MacBooks for our "Classrooms for the Future" program instead of the PC package. The PA Department of Education has contracted with two vendors to provide professional development and training for CFF, and schools have only two options: (1) Apple or (2) CDW-G, who has the PC solution. We weren't impressed with the IBM Lenovos offered by CDW-G and really liked what the Apple solution offers, including high-quality tech integration training for our teachers. (Of course, there is no guarantee that we will get the grant. First, the PA Legislature has to include funding in the state budget for the CFF program!)

I read that Wilkes University in Eastern PA has just switched over to Macs. You can read their justification for the changeover on the Wilkes web site. Apple computers have traditionally been education friendly, but many schools went to PCs so that students are familiar with the Windows operating systems that they will find in business. More software is produced for PCs as well, but now Macs can run both Windows and the related software. Macs also have less security and virus-related issues.

We've been experimenting with a MacBook that our Mac vendor has loaned to us for a couple of weeks. Teachers, please comment on your impressions of the MacBook!

Students, how do you feel about using a Mac? Also, how do you feel about having access to laptops, whiteboards, and projection systems in your core subject classrooms? How do you think this will change the way you learn? How do you feel about a more rigorous curriculum? Some schools are switching to an all-digital curriculum. Do you see Keystone going in that direction?

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