Today all students in grades K through 12 in Goochland County Public Schools use iPad and MacBook Air in a one-to-one learning environment. Once again, Goochland’s schools have been recognized as Apple Distinguished Schools. Byrd Elementary, Goochland Elementary, Randolph Elementary, Goochland Middle, and Goochland High School have all been designated as Apple Distinguished Schools for 2019-2021.
Schools receiving this designation have an established one-to-one program, distinguished by innovative use of technology in the hands of students to promote engaging learning experiences. Distinguished schools have faculty that demonstrate proficiency with technology, and school leaders articulate a vision for how technology can promote student success, with results toward established instructional goals.
All five schools created teams during the 2018-19 school year to author original multitouch, multimedia books that showcase their journey with 1:1 devices in the hands of students. These books became part of the application process to be recognized as an Apple Distinguished School. (To see a preview of these books, visit the school division’s instructional technology blog at http://engage.goochlandschools.org/2019/08/30/whats-our-story/.)
According to Apple’s website (https://www.apple.com/education/apple-distinguished-schools/), there are fewer than 500 Apple Distinguished Schools worldwide, and the program is represented by schools in over thirty countries. “More than anything else, this recognizes the hard work and dedication of our teachers, our administrators, our technology department, and our school board to provide the support students need for their future work and civic engagement,” says superintendent Dr. Jeremy Raley.
“The app environment, the quality of hardware, and the mobility of iPad is a great match toward our goals with deeper learning here in Goochland,” remarks director of innovation and strategy, Dr. John Hendron. “And in high school, students continue their technology journey with a MacBook that provides portability and all-day battery life. Students are able to use industry-leading tools in our specialty programs such as digital graphics, digital imaging, and computer-aided design.”
Goochland’s technology department is headed by Peter Martin, who leads a team of five to manage all of the division’s one-to-one devices for staff and students, network, phone infrastructure, school security investment, and student data management. “One of the reasons we use Apple technology in our schools is that we can manage an entire fleet of devices with a small team. As an Apple Distinguished School, we also benefit from being part of a community that shares best practices in using technology and can connect with other schools and education experts to further develop our team.”
Goochland was first recognized as an Apple Distinguished Program in 2015.