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Auburn schools opt for iPads over state-issued laptops

6:18 PM, May 22, 2013   |    comments
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AUBURN, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Last month, Governor LePage announced the state would be ending its contract with Apple, giving Maine students Hewlett Packard laptops instead.

But that decision also comes with a choice: school districts can opt for other highly rated options, including Apple iPads.

In Auburn, kindergarten students and first graders have already been using iPads in the classroom in a program called Advantage 2014.

School administrators say there's evidence to show students using the tablet technology improve test scores across the board.

"When you combine good training with a good teacher and an iPad, our students learn so much more than with just a good teacher alone," said Mike Muir, the Multiple Pathways Leader for the Auburn School Department.

Seeing the iPad's success in the elementary schools made the district-wide decision an easier one: the Auburn School Department will be opting for the tablets instead of the state-issued HP laptops.

"It makes sense to continue on and build on what we've already started than to go into a completely different direction," said Peter Robinson, the Auburn School Department's Technology Director.

Robinson explained the iPad's will save about $25 dollars per student, and he expects it to cut down the money needed for repairs.

He said in the two years the kindergarten and first grade student have been using iPads, only 10 out of 700 have broken.

Robinson said laptops are repaired much more frequently.

On top of that, school adminstrators see tablet technology as the way of the future.

"What we've seen over the last ten years is when you move in that direction [of customized education], students have much more ownership and therefore take much better care of it, and use it more effectively," said Robinson.

NEWS CENTER

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