In recent years, the Haverhill High School, located in Haverhill, Massachusetts has been climbing a difficult road back from sub standard evaluations that had placed it on the brink of losing its accreditation with the State.
The steps that the school took were to begin with a structural rebuild that renovated the exterior, modernized the science classrooms and labs, revamped the computer labs, repaired the HVAC systems and gymnasium areas including the swimming pool.
The school hasn’t stopped with the basics though. Thanks to School Superintendent James Scully, Haverhill High School has focused on improving MCAS scores and how the curriculum is taught. Scully’s next big step? Apple.
Jim Scully has a vision to roll out Apple iPads to the students and do away with many conventional textbooks. It is unclear exactly how many iPad’s will be rolled out, but it’s safe to assume that iPad’s will be given on a per-classroom basis rather than a per-student basis. The iPad can be loaded with the most up to date books and offer teaching methods that were only dreamed about in years past. Mathematic lessons that jump out at you with animated example problems, History that shows you major events instead of just reading about them, Science that immerses the student with rich interactive displays…
This isn’t just a pipe dream. The school has built a place to start rolling out these products. Right within the High School the school system has developed a room now known as the iSchool. A mix of teaching facility and Apple store, the iSchool will offer discounted products to both students and staff, as well as instruction to any who require it. It even duplicates Apple’s signature aesthetic, down to the glossy white walls and light wood tables.
During the week of April 8th, teachers were issued new Macbook Airs and were encouraged to give them a spin, load them up, and figuratively “kick theirs tires”. Some teachers were reluctant; the language teacher who had to be coaxed by students to take it out of the packaging, the history teacher who went for training in the iSchool because (his own words) he is technically challenged, and more to be sure. But as the world moves forward, it is important that our educational systems must move as well.
Check out more photos of the iSchool Store after the break.