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PLPSD keeping up with tech

By Aaron Wilgosh, The Graphic

File Photo

File Photo

Technology is more prevalent in the classroom than ever before and the Portage la Prairie School Division is trying to stay out front with the latest programs and tools offered through programs like 'bring your own device' and Google Classroom.

“We’ve been running the ‘bring your own device’ program at a few schools now,” says PLPSD Assistant Superintendent, Pam Garnham. “We’ve even been integrating some Bluetooth keyboards that students have been using with their cell phones in class, as well as some old outdated netbooks we’ve repurposed into Chromebooks at PCI.”

Portage Collegiate is in its fourth year of taking part in the device program as students will use their mobile phone or tablet to help with assignments during classes or track their assignment due dates. Garnham attended the annual technology conference ‘Riding The Wave’ in Gimli, Man., this past week where she says teachers and administration gather to learn more about technology in the classroom. 

“It’s a great three days of infusing technology and learning for staff,” says Garnham. “You can choose what sessions you go to so you can learn everything from droids to Google Classroom and Seesaw and how you can apply them into the classrooms. It’s always a really good couple of days that turn out to be a big event.”

The three-day conference offers inside information into how devices like cell phones should be used as tools inside of the classroom instead of banned taken at the beginning of class. The PLPSD has a new Tech Coach in PCI teacher Darin Arnold, who Garnham says is a big help.

“(Arnold) helping with things like Seesaw, which is a mini version of Google Classroom for younger students and he’s been offering a lot of help to teachers through presentations and emails,” says Garnham. “We want to expand on the bring your own device program and others. It’s just like having a pen and paper, if it’s the right tool for the job, you use it."

She adds the Division wants to lead the way when it comes to technology and their students’ education. to technology and their students’ education.

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