Tuesday, June 5, 2012


Thirty school districts and two charter schools across Idaho will be the first to achieve 1:1 ratios of laptop devices to students and teachers in the next two years, Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna announced today.

The 1:1 initiative is a part of the bold Students Come First laws, which are comprehensively changing Idaho’s education system to ensure every student graduates from high school prepared to go on to postsecondary education or the workforce without the need for remediation.

This first phase of deploying devices will reach large school districts in Boise, Meridian and Idaho Falls as well as small, rural districts in Culdesac, Notus and Oneida.

“This is an exciting day for schools all across Idaho,” Superintendent Luna said. “Reaching a one-to-one ratio of students and teachers to laptop devices in every public high school is just one part of the Students Come First laws. Idaho schools now join thousands of schools across the United States in creating 21st century classrooms where learning opportunities are limitless and will provide equal access to the best educational opportunities for every student – no matter where they live.”

Students Come First puts the programs and policies in place necessary to create the 21st century classroom in every Idaho classroom, to provide equal access to the best opportunities for every Idaho student no matter where they live, and to recruit and retain highly effective teachers in the profession.

Some of these programs include achieving a 1:1 ratio of students and teachers to laptop devices in every high school, improving teacher pay with $40 million in new funding for pay-for-performance, supporting classroom teachers with $4 million a year in ongoing funding for professional development, and paying for high school students to take up to 36 dual credits before graduation.

Idaho will begin phasing in the 1:1 initiative for public high schools in Fall 2012 by deploying devices to high school teachers and principals first. They will receive devices along with a year of intensive professional development. The devices will then be deployed to students over the following three years. In Fall 2013, the state will deploy devices to the first round of high schools representing one-third of high school students. The state will continue to deploy devices to high schools over the next two years until a 1:1 ratio is reached in all grades 9-12. All high schools will eventually reach a 1:1 ratio.

“We are ecstatic to be part of the first third in the 1:1 deployment of technology in Idaho’s high schools,” said Alan Dunn, Superintendent of the Sugar-Salem School District in eastern Idaho. “We are grateful for the forward thinking of Superintendent Luna and the Idaho State Legislature in helping to provide funding for this initiative. The 1:1 deployment will support the activities already in progress in our school district. We firmly believe that this program will have a positive impact on the instruction by our teachers and increase student learning.”

Cindy Orr, Superintendent and Elementary Principal of the Highland Joint School District, in northcentral Idaho, said: “A year ago, Highland School District was a small, rural school with basic technology tools. Within one year, through Students Come First and the different technology grants, we have been able to bring Highland into the 21st century and provide our students the tools they need to meet their educational goals. Being chosen to be one of the schools in the first third of the 1:1 deployment continues that effort to provide our students similar opportunities provided in larger school districts.”

Linda Clark, Superintendent of Joint School District No. 2 (Meridian), said: “Joint School District No. 2 is thrilled to be selected to receive the 1:1 student laptops as part of the Phase I roll-out. This will enable us to more aggressively move toward the creation of 21st Century classrooms by putting powerful learning tools into the hands of our teachers and students. Further, these tools will expand student access to the courses offered through the district's Virtual Schoolhouse.”

Because more than 170 high schools representing 84 percent of Idaho’s high school students wanted to participate in the first round of deployment, the state developed a competitive application process to determine the schools and districts that were most ready to benefit. A committee made up of educators in Idaho and staff at the State Department of Education conducted a “blind” review of the applications throughout May where the reviewers did not know which schools or districts they were rating. The selections were determined by point rankings on the application by region to ensure school districts in every region of the state would participate in the first deployment.

The 32 school districts and public charter schools selected for the first third will choose which of their high schools will participate, if they have more than one.

Here is the full list of the districts and charter schools selected for the first deployment of 1:1 devices to students, beginning in Fall 2013:

Region 1
  • Coeur d’Alene School District
  • Coeur d’Alene Charter Academy
  • Lakeland School District
Region 2
  • Cottonwood School District
  • Culdesac School District
  • Genesee School District
  • Highland School District
  • Idaho Distance Education Academy
  • Lewiston School District
Region 3
  • Boise School District
  • Emmett School District
  • Homedale School District
  • Kuna School District
  • Melba School District
  • Meridian School District
  • Middleton School District
  • Notus School District
  • Vallivue School District
Region 4
  • Cassia School District
  • Kimberly School District
  • Minidoka School District
Region 5
  • Bear Lake School District
  • Grace School District
  • North Gem School District
  • Oneida School District
  • Pocatello School District
  • Soda Springs School District
  • West Side School District
Region 6
  • Bonneville School District
  • Fremont School District
  • Idaho Falls School District
  • Sugar-Salem School District
Here is more reaction from local school districts and public charter schools that were selected to participate in the first deployment of 1:1 laptop devices for students:

George Boland, Superintendent of Idaho Falls School District 91, said: “We are very excited to be included in the state’s initial rollout of the 1:1 initiative. We believe it will enhance our district’s efforts to transform education by creating schools with a culture that empowers, instruction that engages and technology that enables. Launching our Compass Academy through the New Tech Network this fall will give us a year of experience in a 1:1 environment, and that will be a tremendous benefit as we work to implement this initiative in high schools across the district.”

Chuck Shackett, Superintendent of the Bonneville School District 93, said: “We are absolutely thrilled. This award allows Bonneville School District to take the next step in keeping students excited and engaged in 21st Century Learning. It will help us accomplish our goal for every student in 1st-12th grades to have a mobile computing device by 2013!”

Mary Vagner, Superintendent of the Pocatello/Chubbuck School District, said: “We are grateful to have Pocatello High School students selected for the first round of distribution of one-on-one devices. We are eager to begin teacher training and planning for the online course requirements. We hope the rest of our high school students will get their devices in year two. We are eager to ensure consistency in teacher training and student use.”

Jamie Holyoak, Superintendent of Grace and North Gem School Districts, said: “Our students are interacting with electronic media every day; it is their preferred learning modality. The opportunity to be in the first one-third of districts to receive mobile devices in Idaho gives us the chance to deliver our curriculum to students in a way that they find intriguing and exciting. The potential for increased student engagement and the vast resources available through this initiative will be a great benefit to our students and staff.”

Barbara Taylor, Superintendent of the West Side School District, said: “We are pleased that West Side was selected to be in the first phase of this technology project. Our teachers are motivated to use the technology to enhance their students' education. Our faculty feels that we can expedite the learning process and prepare our students for the 21st century world, and this grant will provide us that opportunity. Our students are ready to engage with technology, and we are excited for this opportunity. We thank those who reviewed our application and are grateful that our students and staff can be in the first phase.”

 Scott Rogers, Superintendent of the Minidoka County School District, said: “We are very honored and excited to be on the forefront in implementing advanced classroom technology via the first third deployment of 1:1 devices in Idaho. This is an unprecedented opportunity for us to be a leader in engaging 21st Century learners with 21st Century tools. We can now provide our students with equal access to the best educational opportunities that any other district in the state - or the country - can provide.”

Kathleen Noh, Superintendent of the Kimberly School District, said: “Kimberly School District is pleased to be among the first third of high schools to receive the one-to-one devices for our students. We are anxious for the opportunity to leverage our experience with mobile devices to help develop the 21st century classroom, a vision that blends the efficiency of technology with the proven value of project-based learning.”

Gaylen Smyer, Superintendent of the Cassia School District, said: “Providing high school teachers and students with mobile computing devices and greater access to electronic media presents an unprecedented opportunity for schools to fundamentally change and expand student learning. Elementary teachers currently focus considerable attention helping students with learning to read. The upper classes will increasingly be less restricted by the limitations of printed materials, many of which are outdated, as teachers assist students in developing the essential skill in reading to learn.”

Andy Grover, Superintendent of the Melba School District, said: “The Melba School District is excited about the opportunity to have each of our students in the high school receive a computing device. This opportunity will allow us, as a small, rural school district, to open up a new world of learning and equal access to the best educational opportunities that other schools in our region have had for years. This will allow our students equal access and help put us all on the same educational track with the ability to take classes from other schools, universities, and even other states.”

Rich Bauscher, Superintendent of the Middleton School District, said: “For the last several years, we have taken the steps to bring 21st Century technological innovation to our classrooms across the entire district. Our new High School (opened in the Fall of 2011) has taken that 21st Century technology innovation to a new level. We are embracing the challenges, but more importantly, looking forward to the gains our students will achieve using these 1:1 mobile devices.”

Wendy Moore, Superintendent of the Genesee School District, said: “The Genesee School district is excited to be one of the first districts to receive the 1:1 laptop devices. We believe this initiative will help bring greater educational opportunities for our students and help raise academic achievement. We are very grateful for this opportunity to invest in our future....our students.”

Joy Rapp, Superintendent of the Lewiston School District, said: “I want to thank our teachers and staff who worked tirelessly on this application. It is because of them that we are now a leader in the State of Idaho in implementing classroom technology and raising student achievement. They put students first every day, and it shows! We know that the real work has just begun, but we are very excited to be selected for the first-third deployment of 1:1 laptop devices.”

Hazel Bauman, Superintendent of the Coeur d’Alene School District, said: “We are thrilled by the selection of Coeur d’Alene High School as it takes its place in the first third of students in the state of Idaho to receive the mobile computing devices. Our district is eager to get technology into the hands of our students, and we look forward to tracking the achievements of our students as they utilize these devices in the classroom and beyond.”

Dan Nicklay, Principal of Coeur d’Alene Charter Academy, said: “We are very grateful and excited to be included in the first third of the deployment of these devices. Our teachers are eager to implement these new tools in their instruction to improve the educational experience for our students. Thanks to the State Department of Education for making this possible!”

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