Thursday, 15 December 2011

Posh suburban school's diktat: iPad2 the new blackboard!

For 840-odd students studying in classes VI to XII in a posh suburban Mumbai school, stocking up on stationery for the new academic year wouldn't just stop at the basics. According to the latest circular released by the school, students of Podar International High School, located in Santacruz, Mumbai will have to resort to the use of tablets, more specifically the iPad2, in a move by the school management to replace the blackboard. Vandana Lulla, Director, Podar International School, according to a MiD DAY report stated that the school was bracing the change from blackboards to interactive boards and from laptops, to the latest fad - the iPad2.
The lowest low!
The lowest low!

The report also states that the school held several PTA (Parent-Teacher Association) meetings, wherein they discussed the issue with the parents, and while some parents lapped up the decision, there were some who feel that spending Rs.40,000 on a tablet for students makes for an "unnecessary expense". Moreover, these parents believe that thrusting a fancy gadget like an iPad2 in the hands of kids is not a very "feasible idea". Interestingly, the report states that, although the Director herself has denied on making this a compulsory rule, the circular itself (below) leaves little space for an alternative. 

The circular, which reads, "We are pleased to announce that the decision taken by the school management of using Apple iPad2 in the classroom by the students has been welcomed by the parent community. Parents now have the choice of either purchasing the iPad2 from the school on an outright basis or avail of a finance scheme on offer. You also need to indicate if the iPad2 will be purchased by you on your own. You are requested to mark your choice... to take further steps to initiate the process and negotiate the bulk order purchase." 

While it does seem to be a fancy idea to brace technology with such fervour, the school's insistence on bringing in the iPad2 only, because a certain parent's an Apple employee is puzzling. Also, what do you think will happen if a section of students get in their iPad2s to the classroom and a section of students use interactive blackboards, because they choose to not spend extra - Is this the beginning of a trend? Let us know your comments in the section below.

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