New Changes in Technology, Instructional Time, and Cafeteria Options

New+Changes+in+Technology%2C+Instructional+Time%2C+and+Cafeteria+Options

Written by Ella Erickson, Ellie Mumaw, Haley Saffer

We. Are. Woodgrove. We are still Woodgrove, but now with new lap-tops, upgraded lunches, and more classroom time.

Changes in Technology

Is Woodgrove High School going backwards or forwards in the area of technology? Well, that depends on who you talk to about the issue. Woodgrove staff and students are still adapting to the Central Office’s decision to change from desktop computers to lap-tops.  A few changes have been positive.  30 lap-tops have replaced the 18 desktops in the library, so fewer students have to wait to use a computer.

Still, there are many issues. Woodgrove teachers and students are experiencing problems due to a lack of printers. Due to School Board budget cuts, classroom printers have been phased out.  Now, when students and teachers press “print,” all print jobs default to lab L516, which now holds a large stack of unclaimed work.  Also, the few copiers in the building are sometimes overheating and shutting down due to the volume of print jobs being copied.

Teachers and students are also adjusting to the lack of computers in the classrooms. Woodgrove classrooms used to have two desktops and a printer per room, but now each room is limited to only one lap-top, which is used solely by the classroom teacher. Many teachers are under-whelmed by the change, as the new lap-tops also lack USB space and a disc player.  Woodgrove administrators have now purchased USB hubs so teachers can attach multiple devices to the lap-tops.

Teachers are also having issues with projection, especially in shared classrooms.  According to English Teacher Lea Longerbeam, “If a teacher projects a Power-point presentation, the next teacher who logs in can no longer project to the Promethean board, and must go through multiple steps to correct the issue. This wastes valuable class time. “

Prior to the opening of school, the new lap-tops failed EDS testing for In-Design and a few other programs, so LCPS administration ordered a few desktops to be returned to Woodgrove so the publications classes could continue to produce the school newspaper, literary magazine, and yearbook.

About the changes, Technology Research Teacher Keith Hicks says, “The lap-tops work fine; it’s just all the other things that go along with using the lap-tops that causes problems.” However, Hicks continued, “I think the biggest issue that may be arising at this time is that the lap-tops are not really devices that are meant to be used as a work station.”

Another issue that goes along with the lap-tops, especially noticed by Woodgrove staff members, is the absence of a DVD player. English Teacher In Sim says that when she plans to show a movie in class, “I’m going to go to the ever helpful Mr. Hicks and say, help!”

 

Homeroom Changes

Like desktops, daily homeroom has come to an end, increasing overall class time by 13 minutes a day and 1,140 minutes a school year. Although some students used previously used homeroom time for last minute homework and studying, Junior Eric Dorsch says, “It was a waste of time.”  Math Teacher Thomas Acquino agrees with getting rid of homeroom, but he added that in the case of an emergency evacuations, homeroom teachers could have a difficult time recognizing their students, as they don’t see them every day.

Cafeteria Changes

There have been numerous changes in the cafeteria as well. The price of a school lunch actually decreased from $3.15 to $3.10.  Even though the price went down, “The quality and the options we’re giving students went up,” says Cafeteria Manager Genelda Bartling. Students can now serve themselves fruit and salad, making it more like a food court than a school cafeteria. There is also a seasoning bar with different sauces and spices. Sophomore Jack Delmonte thinks the new variety of food gives him something to look forward to. Delmonte said, “It’s nice how people get to choose their type of meat for Chinese day.”

Mrs. Bartling and her staff have worked hard to implement the changes in the cafeteria.  She said, “Workers slice and dice food for Chinese Day and hand-roll the Stromboli’s for Italian Day.  I would rather the food be prepared that way rather than being processed, it’s closer to homemade.”

Loudoun County students can now access the daily menu through a free app called “Web Menu,” which also gives students with allergies a list of the foods to avoid.

Steps to get the Web Menu App:

Go to the LCPS website > go to the “services” tab > go to the School Nutrition Services page > click on the “Web Menu” link and download the free app from the App Store or from Google Play