The East Alton Elementary School District is headed into a new world of technology after the school board agreed to purchase iPads for most of the student body. The tablet-style computers will be used by third through eighth graders, with kindergarten through second graders sharing the computers, all beginning this school year.
The East Alton School Board voted unanimously in favor of a lease-purchase agreement with Apple over four years at a cost of $129,000 per year. That also includes 70 Mac Book Air laptops that will be used by teachers to create lessons for the iPads. Delivery of the machines should come this summer, and they will begin be used in the classroom in October. School officials say they are excited by the opportunity because the movement by Apple is away from digital textbooks and toward a wider ranging curriculum that will offer more choices for teachers. East Alton Elementary is among several local school districts and parochial schools that are moving toward the use of more individual tablet computers for its students.