The student news site of Clayton High School.

Pro / Con: Google Chromebooks

May 13, 2017

Should CHS implement Google Chromebooks in their curriculum for every student?



Art by Lizzy Mills.

An immigration professor came to History teacher Debra Wiens’ class to teach a lesson to students. The first step of her lesson was for everybody to take out their laptops and refer to a graph on immigration.

It was not until she was informed that Clayton students did not have devices available at hand that she changed her plan, doubtful that everybody would see the detailed graph on the smartboard.

With the upcoming availability of Google Chromebooks, each student will have access to devices around the clock. This allows all students to have standardized access to online resources outside of school hours.

Clayton will also be supplying Internet for students, which will take away the deficits of those who do not have accessible Internet or computers at home.

A Junior in Wiens’ class explained that he is at a disadvantage because he does not have a computer at home. When he is assigned a project, he has to spend his forty-five minute lunch period rushing to utilize the Internet and resources he has available at school. He quickly gets his lunch, runs to find a computer lab, and listens to the documentary he needs, or searches for the database required.

Students who do not have computers have to choose how they spend their limited time in the library. They choose between utilizing school resources for research, writing, or printing.

When students do not have Internet or computers at home, they are not adequately equipped with the essential tools to succeed in Clayton’s competitive environment.

Wiens said, “It’s like me taking a textbook away from a student and saying ‘I’m sorry you just have to [do] the best you can in school’”.

Students who are already at a disadvantage in the Clayton system are not helped and they do not have any upward mobility because they don’t have access to Internet.

This exacerbates the achievement gap that already exists between Clayton students.

In addition to supplying students with equal opportunities, Chromebooks will initiate speed and mobility in the classroom.

They will be used frequently as reliable references, and will serve as mechanisms for producing ideas and keeping objectives organized. Chromebooks will also enhance students’ abilities to ask questions and find immediate answers.

Though there are computers currently available for use, classes (not including sciences) are forced to move to one of the few computer labs available in the school.

Teachers have to book labs far in advance, which leaves no flexibility in lesson plans. The class time that is wasted by moving to labs and getting settled becomes an inconvenience when the computers are only necessary for a small portion of class.

When Chromebooks become available in all classrooms, students and teachers will be able to access computers for any amount of time. This will eliminate the time that is lost by trekking back and forth from classes to labs.

With the implementation of Chromebooks, Internet access and resources will be equal; student to student, teacher to teacher, and department to department.

This is a supplement to Clayton that has been long overdue.



Art by Lizzy Mills.

“There are only two reasons to be looking down at your crotch and smiling – neither are appropriate for the classroom.” This admonition posted in one CHS classroom, although humorous, calls attention to one of the most serious learning impediments for high school students: cell phones.

In our technological age, cell phones have become a necessity. Their myriad of functions range from mindless games to complex calculators. Yet currently, cell phones create the two biggest distractions in the classroom: text messaging and social media.

CHS teachers wage a daily war against cell phones in the classroom. Some go so far as to confiscate them for the rest of the day. And since cell phones are always forbidden in the classroom, a teacher can easily remove them and their inherent distraction.

But what will happen when laptops – and their distracting abilities – are omnipresent at CHS?

Nicholas Carr, the bestselling author of “The Shallows,” claims “the typical electronic screen is an ‘ecosystem of interruption technologies,’ encouraging us to peek at our e-mail in-box, glance at Twitter and waste away the day on eBay.”

Once laptops are on every desk, no teacher will be able to tell whether a student is researching “the role women played in America’s war time economies of the first half of the twentieth century” or browsing the Internet for prom dresses.

By giving all students a laptop, the school is only increasing the potential opportunity and temptation to misuse the device and allow it to detract from learning.

There are also cost concerns. With more than 800 adolescents carrying over 200 dollars worth of technology, there is a high likelihood of dropped computers and cracked screens.

Where will the money for the insurance or repairs on these devices come from?

Another continual cost of the Chromebooks will be for the WiFi for all of the devices, which the school plans to arrange for even at the students’ houses.

The School District of Clayton already spends more than $19,000 per student. The expense of these laptops can be eliminated by requiring students to walk 30 seconds to the nearest available computer in the school.

Furthermore, many CHS students already have laptops with higher functioning capabilities than the Chromebook. A student who already possesses a superior laptop is not likely to use the school issued Chromebook. As a result, the district begins to waste resources on students who do not need these laptops.

Also, as old CHS computers become out-dated, only sanctioned computer labs will have new desktop replacements. Thus, under the new plan, the science department will not have their computers replaced.

Some members of the Science Department have claimed that Chromebooks cannot support

“LoggerPro,” the science department’s graphing and analysis software.

And although Chrome has its own version of “LoggerPro,” it lacks certain capacities beneficial to students, such as calculated columns.

Ultimately, the School District must look at what is best for the greatest number of Clayton students.

But where and when did the Clayton community, including students, discuss buying Chromebooks for ALL students. Since a majority of students already have access to laptops, was providing laptops for only students who NEED them ever considered?

As Chromebooks pose a risk to both the academics and finances of Clayton, the District should reconsider its plan to distribute them.

Leave a Comment
About the Contributors
Photo of Olivia Joseph
Olivia Joseph, Opinion Section Editor

Olivia is a senior and this is her third year being a part of the Globe staff. She is the editor of the Opinion section. She joined Globe because she appreciates journalism, likes...

Photo of Charlie Brennan
Charlie Brennan, Senior Managing Editor

Charlie is a senior and a fourth year member on the Globe staff. Besides being a senior managing editor for the Globe, Charlie enjoys playing piano and viola. He loves eating...

The Globe • Copyright 2023 • FLEX WordPress Theme by SNOLog in

Comments (0)

All online comments are reviewed by a member of the editorial staff before being approved. This site is intended to provide information and engage in open and respectful dialogue that is appropriate to the educational environment and fans of all ages. To ensure that exchanges are informative, respectful and lawful, we will NOT post comments that are off topic, spam, personal attacks, illegal, not factual or not appropriate in any other way.
All The Globe Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *