In School House News, Superintendent Jerry House shares his view on education and on the Big Sky School District, which is his favorite place for teaching and learning. News is selected from all three schools – Ophir Elementary, Ophir Middle School and Lone Peak High School.

A look at BSSD’s technology

The Big Sky School District is going wireless. And thanks to a committee of K-12 staff members, the district has approved its new Technology Plan for 2013-2016.

Our first goal is to have students and staff trained in tablets like iPads or Chromebooks, and for each student to have access to one. This means training in a variety of apps is a must for all staff, as well as students. We plan to have students and staff develop a policy and procedures to set the standard for accountability and security for wireless use. BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) will be allowed if that device fits into the new policy and procedures.

Another objective of our Technology Plan is to have students knowledgeable in the use of platforms, preparing them for college and for to be competitive in the global world of work.

Fantastic! That is the first word that comes to my mind about the new classroom and class offerings allowed by the Technology Plan. Students now have choices never before offered.

Offerings include Alternative Energy, Robotics, 3-D Modeling and Animation, Web Casting, Technical Drawing, Introduction to Engineering and Electronics. With the expertise of our Technology teacher, Mr. Matt Bakken, current and fugure students will have choices that affect their lives after high school.

The rigorous curriculum will not be a standalone class, as the skills will be integrated into all areas of learning regardless of the subject. For me, this is a prime example of a district program that raises the bar and produces students with great technical skills.

Technology programs are constantly a work in progress. I’m pleased to report that the district is now setting standards that will serve as a platform allowing for continued change and truly meet the needs of our community’s children, for now and into the future.

I also want to thank the Big Sky Weekly for publishing School House News.

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The Big Sky School District, in accordance with district policy, supports the use of the Internet and other technologies in the district’s instructional program as a way to facilitate learning and teaching through interpersonal communications, access to information, research and collaboration. This use of technology must be consistent with and enhance the district’s curriculum and consider the varied instructional needs, learning styles, abilities and developmental levels of students.