Washington County Schools Phasing Out Chalk and Dry-Erase Boards

By: Bryan Anderson Email
By: Bryan Anderson Email

Chipley- "It's called a Promethean board," said Roulhac Middle School teacher Lajuana Malloy.

With a name that sounds like something from the stone age, the Promethean board is anything but ancient. It's a new-age chalk board of sorts with a heavy dose of technology.

"It's much more interesting. You don't have to figure out how am I going to say this or which handout, it's now which multi-media image, device am I going to use," said Chipley High School teacher Carol Schimpf.

From lesson planning to internet surfing, Schimpf said the Promethean does pretty much anything.

"This has turned out to be actually the most useful tool I've ever had," said Schimpf.

Six Washington County teachers tested the new board in 2009. Three years later, it's in more than thirty classrooms. But with ever-decreasing budgets and a focus on doing more with less, the question is is the $5,500 investment for each unit really worth it?

"There are many teachers here on campus clamoring for that," said Schimpf.

Instructors and students News Channel 7 spoke with said "Yes."

"How much have things changed for you?," asked News Channel 7's Bryan Anderson.

"Tremendously," said Malloy.

"There's something on the board at all times," said Chipley High School Senior Chelsea Carter.

"It teaches you more," said Chipley High School student Josh Myers.

The district said it bought the Promethean boards mostly through Title One funding. School Superintendent Sandra Cook said she hopes to have enough money to buy ten more next school year.

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  • by SC on Apr 12, 2012 at 09:05 AM
    I agree with previous comment about how it's about engaging the student, not wow'ing him. But I just want to add that when you were a student, you weren't going into the workforce competing with the ones who had been introduced to these technologies... these kids will.
  • by Jason Location: PC on Apr 12, 2012 at 08:19 AM
    I've been in educaion for many years and this is nothing more than "keeping up with the Joneses". Anything new is always touted as being better than what was used before. After the new wears off though, the students will be right back to the levels of learning they were at before. So much scarce money wasted on technology toys, that in the long run, don't supply any longterm learning gains. Look at the facts. Students completeing high school today are less prepared academically than those who finished school many years ago, when a chalk board was the teaching tool of choice. And don't forget the upgrades and maintainance required to keep the new toys working properly. With chalk or marker boards you just have to replace the chalk and makers. Engaging students is how you help them learn, not trying to WOW or entertain them.
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