Commissioner’s Update – Nov. 17, 2011

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This week, educators from Maine and across the country — and even some from outside the United States — have traveled to Auburn to learn about the implementation of Advantage 2014 in that city’s schools.

Advantage 2014 is the Auburn schools’ initiative to roll out iPads to kindergarteners and, ultimately, all city students in the early grades. The Auburn plan, however, involves more than simply equipping the city’s youngest students with tablet devices.

It’s a plan to make those devices an integral part of student learning: to use the adaptive power of iPads to boost basic literacy and numeracy skills, to use any range of iPad apps to enhance students’ problem-solving and critical-thinking skills, to provide students with a way to take control of much of their learning at a young age.

The Auburn school department has a well thought-out plan for deploying iPads, training teachers to use them effectively, and measuring the initiative’s success. And as this week is making clear, many will be watching Auburn’s journey every step of the way.

Please note: There will be no Commissioner’s Update on Nov. 24, Thanksgiving. The next Update will be published Dec. 1.

— Stephen Bowen


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