The student news site of Benilde-St. Margaret's School in St. Louis Park, MN

Knight Errant

The student news site of Benilde-St. Margaret's School in St. Louis Park, MN

Knight Errant

The student news site of Benilde-St. Margaret's School in St. Louis Park, MN

Knight Errant

High school looks to expand technology

High school looks to expand technology


Because the junior high laptop program is running so smoothly this year and the teachers are able to effectively use the laptops on a daily basis with the curriculum, the school is seriously considering introducing the program into the senior high, but definitely not next year.

According to Dr. Sue Skinner, senior high principal, the decision will be made by an “ad hoc technology committee,” which will be comprised of “parents and board members with an expertise in technology planning.” The committee will work on an overall technology plan for the school because “technology is more than just computers,” said Dr. Skinner.

“Technology is an integral part of what happens in our school,” said Dr. Skinner. BSM has been working with more and more technology in the classroom, with this year’s introduction of the Smart Boards and Promethean Boards, which have received a very positive response from both students and teachers.

There are other options open to BSM instead of buying every student a laptop—a huge expense—like buying more laptop carts and encouraging students to buy their own computers.


The committee needs to decide whether the laptops will “meet the [school’s] educational needs and goals,” said Dr. Skinner.

Because of the high cost, the school wants to be very careful about what they buy, and they want to be sure that if computers are bought now, they won’t be obsolete in a few years; the committee is planning for the future of BSM, not just next year.

A major factor in the committee’s decision will be the success of the laptop program in the junior high, which started the program last year.

After a problematic first year, the program has been running smoothly this year, according to Bob Preston, a member of the technology support staff, “The problems we’re having this year are normal problems any IT faces, and the number is steady, but not overwhelming.”

Apple has been very helpful in dealing with any problems with the computers. “Access to information and technicians is available to me at many levels; I even have two oflaptopsslide2.jpg their home numbers just in case,” said Mr. Preston.

There have been two major changes since the program’s inception last year; the first was that the school received new laptops. The old ones “had a flaw that was embedded in the logic board,” said Mr. Preston.

The flaw was fixed at the end of last year and significant improvement was noticed immediately. During the summer, Apple provided the school with the new generation of the MacBooks.

The second change did not involve the actual computers; rather it was about the users. The junior high students were given “more intensive training on the use of the new MacBooks,” said Mr. Preston.

Teachers gave presentations and provided both students and parents with more information about the computers and their use.

If BSM were to bring the laptop program into the senior high, we would be following other high schools like the Academy of Holy Angels, who recently introduced laptops into their senior high.

According to Dr. Skinner, “Holy Angels gave laptops to their freshman this year, and will give them to their freshmen and sophomores next year.” The technology committee will be interested in the results of Holy Angels’ program because it will give them a glimpse of what the program might look like at BSM.

Whether or not laptops are given to senior high students, BSM will continue to utilize technology in the classroom and will increase student access to technology.

by Joe Kunitz, staff writer

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The student news site of Benilde-St. Margaret's School in St. Louis Park, MN
High school looks to expand technology