Chromebooks Create Discussion Between Students, Faculty, and Administration


Photo by Mark Blevins

Sophomore Ryan Wilkinson works diligently on his sticker-coated Chromebook.

Written by Mark Blevins and Ryan Wilkinson

One of the biggest changes in recent school history is the addition of the new Chromebook system. Every student received a personal laptop to take home and use for the rest of the year, and so far the reception has been mixed.

Priced at $269, the Lenovo 300e Chromebook was the laptop of choice for LCPS due to its features. It includes a 360-degree hinge, military-grade durability, a 10 hour battery life, and a touchscreen that supports using a #2 pencil as a stylus. Jeff Schutte, who was involved with the committee in charge of the decision, has confidence in his choice.

“I went to a meeting last February or March to decide which model to buy, and I think they were the most expensive option, but they were the most durable. You could write on them with a pencil and so many other features. So I feel like if we spent all this money, we should spend it on the stuff that works and will hold up. I feel like that is not what we did with the previous cart laptops. I don’t want to say we bought the cheapest ones, but we probably bought the ones that were not meant for what they were used for.”

Those who dislike the Chromebooks share mostly the same complaints. The main problems include little computing power, limited software, and strict access to the Internet. Sophomore Aidan Johnson aligns with many of these issues. “The budget going towards Chromebooks is somewhat a waste. I can’t download anything on them, they have decent lag, and are just plain overpriced. For the same money you could get better Windows laptops”.

Sophomore Josh Derrow sees it the other way, saying Chromebooks are a beneficial addition to the school curriculum. “It makes it so that teachers can assign assignments outside of class and kids can keep up.”

Sophomore Spencer Holdridge feels there could have been a better use of funds in the budget. “I feel like money could’ve gone towards more useful things than the Chromebooks. Like more supplies, like paper, more pencils, and stuff for teachers, since teachers have to get their own supplies. I know Mrs. Bingaman, for example, had to reach out to companies to try and get stuff on her own. She sometimes has to pay for stuff on her own. We have notebooks for Cyber Security that are Focus Notes, and the students had to buy them from her. So maybe the school could’ve bought those, because they’re really good notebooks”.

Holdridge speaks on the prevalent issue of the cameras in the Chromebooks, and how he feels in the middle about it. “I cover up my own camera on my own laptop just for security reasons. If they were watching students on them, that’d be creepy. I’m fine with the school seeing what you do on the Chromebooks, not what you do outside of them. If you leave your Chromebook open, I don’t want them watching what you in front of them. Like I could be in my room dancing around, and they shouldn’t be able to see that.”