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III. ACTION PLAN:    A. Technology Access    B. ICT Literacy    C. Professional Development    D. Community Involvement     [Data]

ICT Literacy Toolkit
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Effective Projects Case Study


Mobile Laptop Cart Deployment at Profile School District


This is a story about a project that started 9/1/2004.

For more information, please contact: Jacques-Jude Lepine at


Deployment of a mobile wireless 16-unit laptop cart to be used throughout the school


Funding: This project was supported by $11,250 from NCLB Title II-D (Educational Technology) and $11,250 in local funds. The project illustrates how federal funding supports Access - Enhancing existing technology and acquiring new technology to support education reforms and improve student achievement (includes servers, desktops, laptops, peripherals). The project addressed the following grades and content areas:

Gr6-8 Gr9-12 EngLangArts Math Science SocSt TheArts All areas


The Setting: Our 2000 Technology Committee made a decision, upon several presentations by the Science Department, to boost technology integration throughout the school by extending student access to computers beyond the computer lab site.


The plot: The biggest challenge during the planning phase was assessing the benefits of going with this option for the entire school versus other technology options. We overcame this by gathering feedback from other schools, attending technology conferences, investigating best practices nationwide. The biggest challenge during implementation was managing the circulation schedule of the mobile lab. This was a challenge because the increasing demand for it creates occasional scheduling conflicts. This is aggravated by the differences in laptop capabilities (i.e., the first generation does not perform as well as the later ones. Some of the laptops are now less than a year old and others are five years old.) We overcame this by implementing and improving a scheduling system, regularly communicating with teachers. Also the flexibility of the teachers was a great help.


The teachers: 37 teachers were directly involved.


The students: This project offers increased, flexible access to computer-based activities to students in the classroom. With an average class size of 15 students, one cart allows for whole class activities. Certain courses are now offered on a regular basis, such as CAD, Audio Engineering and Student Year Book design, in addition to those regularly offered by the IT Department in its own lab.


The data: We measured the use of the laptop cart. The reservation schedule for this cart shows that it is used during about 80% of school time.


The difference: With an average class size of 15 students, one cart allows an entire class to be involved in technology-based activities. From CAD teacher: The laptop cart helped make Profile's AutoCAD course a reality for our students this year. Its mobility allowed for instruction in the shop, or classroom setting. I preferred the laptops over the labs because it it allowed me to configure seating arrangements that were appropriate for each individual lesson.


Essential conditions: Accurate assessment of needs (hardware and software) and funding; teacher training.


Changes for the future:


Recommendations: For schools of any size, such equipment allows considerably more student interaction with digital technology than site-based computer labs. The deployment can be incremental. We started with five computers in the cart and gradually built up to full capacity as funding became available.


Telling our story: Locally -- Reports to School Board Statewide -- State DOE distributes an online monthly newsletter distributed to school tech coordinators and others. This year such success stories will be featured in the newsletter and posted online to a website. Also, an annual ed tech conference provides a forum for sharing success stories such as this.


Documents to share: a. Sample letters to policy makers: N/A b. Talking points: For schools of any size, such equipment allows considerably more student interaction with digital technology than site-based computer labs. c. Testimony: From CAD teacher: The laptop cart helpe