I was deeply disturbed to read a recent letter to the editor which used my name in the headline yet primarily focused on the author’s achievements and the alleged pitfalls of the 1:1 Chromebook initiative. Our district has worked hard to thoughtfully roll out a 1:1 initiative where all students in grades 6-12 are given a Chromebook to use and our students in grades K-5 have access to a Chromebook while in class. Our administration worked tirelessly to marry the technological needs of our students with security and social concerns. The initiative was the outgrowth of teacher, student and parent feedback piloted over several years.

As such:

•The privacy policy for education is different than for private citizens. Sparta uses “G-Suite,” which provides for security and individual intellectual property;

•Google Apps for Education (GAFE) does not contain ‘grades’ as are found in a report card or transcript. Those are housed within our Student Information System;

•There are zero fees to use any of the GAFE products. This is in stark contrast to how schools were gouged for years by Microsoft;

•We have offered to ensure that every student has access to the Internet. We are committed to that and to date we have not had one instance where any student has not been able to access the curriculum and / or assignments due to a lack of connectivity;

•The privacy and safety of our students is protected by Go Guardian;

•The Chromebook is hardly a piece of junk. It is the best product for the price point, utility and durability. That is why 85% of all educational institutions use them.

This response is written as a private citizen; however, if re-elected to the Sparta Board of Education, I will serve our community as I have for the past three years keeping student achievement at the core of my boardsmanship.

Kylen Anderson

BOE member and candidate

Sparta