Kaneland Approves Switching to 1:1 Initiative


On Monday, Feb. 25, 2019, the Kaneland School Board carried out the 6:0 motion of moving to the 1:1 initiative for next school year. Associate Superintendent Dr. Julie-Ann Fuchs,  Director of Educational Services EC-5 Dr. Sarah Mumm, Director of Educational Services 6-12 Michael Rice and Director of Technology Tim Wolf presented information regarding the proposed 1:1 initiative for grades 4-12 beginning in the 2019-2020 school year. After meeting with students, parents, teachers, administrators and representatives from other school districts and companies with experience in a 1:1 environment, the 1:1 steering committee developed the draft handbook that was presented on Monday night.

“To give you a little bit of the why behind 1:1 learning, and exactly why this is something that came up for Kaneland, I think we’ve talked a lot about personalized learning and Kaneland 2020 and the direction that we are heading. I think that all of us felt really strongly that technology is not only a resource that our kids are using, it’s a resource that’s a part of their world when they leave our halls, and it’s a resource that really opens a lot of the world for them,” Wolf said.

Appropriate use of technology in the learning process can transform how students and teachers interact and evolve with academics. The technology students will access and use throughout their education at Kaneland is not a full replacement for hard copies of textbooks, nor is it meant to replace the learning that can only occur from working with a highly trained professional or through collaborating with a peer. The focus of the 1:1 program in Kaneland School District 302 is to expand opportunities for students while at the same time preparing them for their future in an increasingly technology-centric world, according to the presentation presented by the committee.

“This is going to shift in paradigm in our classrooms for our teachers, for our students, for our parents, but it’s not the end-all-be-all. None of us standing up here believe that when we hand a Chromebook to a student we no longer need that collaboration among them. None of us believe that we no longer need those staff members. We just think that this is a tool to help them with collaboration. We think it’s a tool to help them get into more content for what they’re learning to get new things and show how they’ve learned stuff,” Wolf said.

While most of the kinks have been worked out,  there are still plans for some more parent meetings to discuss the 1:1 initiative, along with making a shorter FAQ based on the handbook for specific stakeholder groups (parents, students and staff). The committee also wants to increase public relations for the parent sessions by sharing updates and plans with the staff through the spring roadshow and individual conversations and by developing communication plans for students.