Should schools be able to use technology in the classroom?
Debate Rounds (4)
I believe students and teachers should be able to use technology in the classroom. iPads, Galaxy Tabs, smartphones, and netbooks are all useful in taking notes, assigning homework, and making school projects. Apps such as iProcrastinate, Kno Textbooks, Dictionary.com and Evernote can make the typical pad and paper seem like a bore. While some students should need limitations and boundaries to do this, i would estimate that 75%+ of students could use this e-School based programs for their academic success.
[Can't wait to start debating :D]
Now I want to give some first hand experience of pros and cons and why I believe the cons outweigh the pros.
To begin I'd like to start off with costs. While it does cost a lot to buy books for the school, tablet of any kind are expensive and require maintenance and replacement for those that are lost or stolen. Another cost of tablets comes in the servers. A school has to have an adequate wifi server, and for the average public school, these servers will most likeley fill up the standard classroom because of how many will be needed.
I would also like to make a point regarding distractions. It is possible to restrict Internet access or put limitations on it, but there are a few things you can't do. You may not block the App Store for the obvious reason that students need it for downloading the apps provided in your argument. While you can block the entire App Store, it is impossible to block small parts of it. Therefore games can be downloaded. Most games don't require an Internet connection to work, and such games will be playable in the classroom. Aside from games even Internet blocks are easy to get around simply by changing the IP address.
While there are benefits of having an iPad such as uniform storage for papers and books, it is also a con. What if the tablet breaks down? We have to assume some tablets will break down, as that's one thing technology does very efficiently. Even after the new IOS7 update, there were numerous reports of people losing all of their data. Once a file is gone, unless it's backed up somewhere else, it's gone. We can't force students to use a cloud storage because some students may not want their stuff on the Internet (cloud storage can be broken into). Granted, not many people are interested in stealing a history paper, the cloud would most likely back up everything else, which students may not want. Based on that, we can't require cloud storage.
So in conclusion, there may be benefits of using tablets, but the cons significantly outweigh. I think for right now, the paper and pencil is the best learning tool that students have, and tablets won't replace that for a long time to come.
MJMiamiBoy2 forfeited this round.
There are 10 million iPads used for education across the American country. (I don't know if this includes Hawaii or Alaska.) While it might be easy to hack into the tablet and access Facebook, Twitter, or Youtube, certain schools (such as mine) have intense filtering. If someone tried to even enter www.facebook.com, their computer-individualized IP address would be sent to a server into the Dean of Student's blocked list. If the student tries to access the website many times in a short period of time that student is brought in to talk to the Dean. Not only are these websites blocked, but the students are being called out.
You say that "While it does cost a lot to buy books for the school, tablet of any kind are expensive and require maintenance and replacement for those that are lost or stolen." Now, public schools should obviously be some of the last of the blunt to use this system, especially as the U.S. government deals with the more critical crises on their hands. However, private schools should be the perfect 'guinea pigs' for this 'experiment'. My school, a more economically accelerated private school located in Hunting Valley/Shaker Heights, Ohio, has already distributed software and Macbook Airs to the students. I am currently writing this from my school computer as we speak. I interviewed the Technological Supervisor for the school and he says that through a method called 15/50/100, repairs are easier to manage. The method goes as this: 15% of the repair fund is paid by the parents. The second time, 50%, the third time, 100%, and so forth. While this might not work for everybody it sure works for my school.
Also, there are some lower-cost tablets available. Amazon Kindle Fire, Asus FonePad, Nexus 7, and Archos 80 Titanium are some examples of beautiful, better tablets for cheaper costs. While iPads might seem more expensive, the Android and Windows 8 platforms offer lower prices for 2nd and 3rd place in the ever-expanding battle of the Operating Systems.
I disagree strongly with your point concerning private schools. On one note, private schools are allowed to use tablets since they are not state regulated. This debate doesn't really apply to them because they can't be restricted or enforced by the state. On another note, the government would be overstepping its boundaries to make private schools provide tablets for students. The only way a guinea pig system would work is if districts started trying it out to see how it works.
Also concerning blocking, I can't rule out the possibility that an Internet blocking system is more efficient than my school's, but it should still be noted that almost all games on App Store don't require Internet and therefore cannot be accessed by the Internet for blocking. Thus, games would be easily accessible during class, and it will lead to a lot of kids getting distracted.
As for private schools, I completely understand what you are saying about the government not being able to control them. I probably shouldn't have worded that in that way.
The 15/50/100 method I said earlier would work very well in tablet maintenance, I feel.
I'm sorry if i seem rushed to do this but I have a lot going on in my life rn, Im so sorry you all :)
I guess I'll just respond to your main point in your last post and leave it up to the voters.
Concerning your first rebuttal, I did actually address this fact earlier in the debate. It is indeed possible to block the App Store on any tablet, however this would be unfeasible since most of the tools needed for school (such as notecard editors and documents storage) would be found as a downloadable app.
Your 15/50/100 policy is a good argument, however, there comes a point where a student's family is immersed in financial problems and doesn't have the finances to repair a tablet if it requires a third repair.
Well, it'll be fun to see how this debate turns out. Thank you for the challenge.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by bsh1 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: FF + minimal rebuttal (Pro acknowledges that they under-argued their side) leads to a Con ballot.
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