Google Chromebooks to replace MacBook Airs next year


Above is a MacBook Air (left) and a Chromebook (right). WHS is replacing the MacBook Airs given to students with Chromebooks. “We put a lot of thought into this decision, and we are confident that it will improve the well-being of students at Wayland.”

Elena Erdekian

The technology department recently announced that Google Chromebooks will replace students’ Macbook Airs next year.

In the WHS 1:1 initiative established several years ago, each student receives a MacBook Air to use both in school and at home for educational purposes. However, the lease between Wayland Public Schools and Apple expires at the end of the 2015-2016 school year, meaning that the MacBooks are not guaranteed for the upcoming school year.

Due to budget cuts in the WHS technology department, renewing the contract for the MacBook Airs was not an option. According to technology specialist Mary Barber, the technology department wanted to maintain the 1:1 initiative but needed to find a more economically reasonable replacement.

“We looked into a variety of products,” Barber said. “We tested out iPads, Android tablets and Dell PC’s, but the Chromebooks are by far much better value than all of the other devices we researched.”

The technology department plans to make the uses for the Chromebooks more school-focused. Students will not be able to download any applications or extensions. The default browser on the Chromebooks, Internet Explorer, cannot be replaced.

“Teachers have always been complaining that students often do not use their laptops for school-related uses during class. When students are supposed to be doing classwork, they are often found online shopping, playing games or watching videos,” Barber said. “In addition, students continue to find ways to stream applications like Spotify and Netflix even though they are both blocked on the school wi-fi.”

Because of the success that Wayland Middle School has had with Chromebooks, Barber is optimistic that these devices will benefit the Wayland High School community.

“We are so excited about the addition of Chromebooks in Wayland High School,” said Barber. “We put a lot of thought into this decision, and we are confident that it will improve the well-being of students at Wayland.”

This article is an April Fools joke!