With a continued focus on new technology, 2,600 Lenovo 300e Chromebooks will make their way into Brainerd students' hands this fall.
The Brainerd School Board approved a purchase and lease agreement for 2,600 Chromebooks and licenses Monday, May 13, as a part of the district's 1:1 technology initiative.
Starting this fall, every student in grades 9-12 will receive a touchscreen laptop to use both at school and at home. Students will keep the Chromebooks until they graduate.
Any students who take at least one class at the high school, Lincoln Education Center or Area Education Center will receive a laptop.
Forestview Middle School students will receive their own laptops to use at school, but will not be allowed to bring them home.
Higher functioning students with developmental cognitive disabilities at FMS School will also receive Chromebooks.
While kindergarten and first grade students use iPads in their classrooms, each second grade class will get a set of four Chromebooks to help students transition from iPads to laptops. And, as is the practice now, third and fourth grade classes in each school will share carts of computers.
The total lease cost of the Chromebooks is $622,000, paid in installments over four years to Vantage Financial. At the end of the four years, the district will be able to keep 10% of the laptops to use as backups for any student who may need repairs on their computer or forget their device at home one day. The other 90% will be shipped back to CDW, the technology firm supplying the laptops.
The board then approved a purchase and lease agreement for 400 new Apple iPads. These will go in kindergarten and first grade classrooms, K-4 special education classrooms and early childhood classrooms. Additionally, lower functioning students with developmental cognitive disabilities in middle and high school will use iPads.
The total cost of the purchase and lease of 400 iPads, cases and licenses is $154,980 for four years. When the four years are over, the district will own the devices, but will be able to sell them back to Apple for about $80-90 a piece.
In other business Monday, the board:
Approved the hiring of Suzanne Rye, occupational therapist at Paul Bunyan Education Cooperative.
Accepted the following resignations: Kate Campbell, seventh grade language arts teacher at Forestview Middle School; Julie Carter, district interpreter; Amanda Dens, fourth grade teacher at Garfield Elementary School; Robb Kolodziej, science teacher at Brainerd High School; Kristine Tomonovich, special education teacher at Forestview.
Accepted donations to the district: $100 from St. Francis of the Lakes Catholic School for the Forestview food pantry; $4,050 from Brainerd Lions for Forestview's courage retreat; $500 from Sourcewell for the district FRED program; $2,000 from Crow Wing County for the Nisswa Elementary School snack cart program; $2,000 from Nisswa Parent Teacher Organization for Nisswa Elementary scholastic books; $500 from Crow Wing County for the Nisswa Elementary yoga program; $4,500 from the Department of Agriculture for food service programs at Harrison, Lowell and Garfield elementary schools; $107.50 from Box Tops for Education for Riverside Elementary School student programs.
Approved a field trip request for the debate and speech teams to go to the National Speech and Debate Tournament June 14-22 in Dallas.
Awarded Anderson Brothers Construction the contract for updates to the lower parking lot at Brainerd High School for an amount not to exceed $1,779,877.