Beginning this week, the Houston Independent School District will be distributing laptops to more than 18,000 students at 14 high schools as part of the second phase of the district’s PowerUp initiative.
PowerUp is a comprehensive,K-12 initiative aimed at digitally transforming teaching and learning throughout the district. It includes the one-to-one distribution of laptops to all high school students, the transition to districtwide digital content and curriculum, and the adoption of a K-12 online teaching and learning platform.
Using the laptops, students will be able to locate, evaluate and interpret information, as well as collaborate with others as they engage in authentic, real-world tasks. Teachers also are receiving laptops and are being trained to help them incorporate technology in the classroom and use it to engage students, personalize instruction and increase academic achievement.
“Our digital transformation has fundamentally changed the way we approach teaching and learning,” HISD Superintendent Dr. Terry Grier said, stressing the importance of closing the digital divide. “Our students are developing the skills they need to complete in a 21st century global economy.
Schools that are scheduled to receive computers over the next month include Davis, Lamar, Milby, Reagan, Scarborough, South Early College, Waltrip, Westbury, Westside, Wheatley and Yates high schools, the Futures Academies at Jones, Jane Long Academy and the High School for Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice.
Media Availability: Reporters interested in covering the laptop distribution and interviewing PowerUp educators and students may visit the High School for Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice on Thursday, Jan. 15 at 9:15 a.m.
Distribution to the 14 high schools marks the completion of the second phase of the district’s one-to-one laptop initiative. The first phase was launched in the 2014-2015 school year, during which laptops were distributed to students at 11 pilot schools: Austin, Bellaire, Chavez, Energy Institute, Kashmere, Lee, Madison, Sam Houston and Sharpstown high schools, as well as the Mickey Leland and Young Women’s college preparatory academies.
The second phase began last fall with distribution to Carnegie Vanguard, Challenge Early College, East Early College and Liberty high schools, the Sharpstown International School, Eastwood Academy and Houston Academy for International Studies.
The third and final phase — which is scheduled to take place in the 2015-2016 school year — calls for distribution of laptops to students and teachers at remaining HISD high schools.