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Thu April 11, 2013
NC Schools Are Transitioning From Textbooks to E-Books
More than 150 education leaders from across the country are meeting Thursday at Discovery Communications’ outside of Washington D.C. to discuss the future of digital textbooks and the transition to the digital classroom. Thousands more are joining the one-day conference on-line.
Dr. Mark Edwards of Mooresville Graded School District is one of two North Carolina superintendents at the event.
“All over the United States we are hearing about different districts that are approaching their work in terms of providing students with twenty-first century tools, teachers, processes, and how they are going about this work. We are also hearing how they have overcome obstacles and built coalitions.
Edwards says, “One of the most exciting elements about being here is the incredible evolution of digital content.”
Edwards also is sharing his district’s experience with using technology. He says school officials from other states, and countries including Thailand and Canada have visited Mooresville to see first-hand how the district is implementing technology in classroom.
For the last five years, The Mooresville Graded School District has provided all students in grades 3-12 grades their own laptop computer to use inside and outside of the classroom.
The school district has also moved to using all on-line content.
“Our biggest source of revenue to do this is that we have stopped buying textbooks, and we have also moved away from buying reference materials, dictionaries, thesauruses because we have it on-line. Instead of a classroom set, every student has this information available 24/7. We rank at almost the bottom of the state with funding and we have done it without external resources,” says Edwards.
Edwards says providing computer access outside of the classroom provides collaboration opportunities for both students and teachers. But most importantly, he says since the changes were made, the district has seen an increase in graduation rates and test achievement scores.
Dr. Anthony Jackson of Nash-Rocky Mount Public Schools also attended the digital education conference.