Darlington County parents learn about technology in students’ classrooms

Darlington County Schools is spending nearly $2.6 million on technology and Tuesday night parents gathered at Mayo High School to learn more about that technology that's being used in their students' classrooms.
Darlington County Schools is spending nearly $2.6 million on technology and Tuesday night parents gathered at Mayo High School to learn more about that technology that's being used in their students' classrooms.

DARLINGTON, SC (WBTW) – Darlington County Schools is spending nearly $2.6 million on technology and Tuesday night parents gathered at Mayo High School to learn more about that technology that’s being used in their students’ classrooms.

“We thought, well let’s introduce it to the parents,” said Jill Knight.

Knight, the Social Studies chair at Mayo High School said she and her colleagues wanted to make sure parents know what their students are up to each day at school.

“Our district just went one-to-one with our high schools, and we thought we’d had it now for almost a semester,” Knight said.

One-to-one means every student is given a laptop to use both inside the classroom and at home. Darlington County Schools started the move toward implementing technology in the classrooms back in 2015, and this is the first year where all students at Mayo have computers.

“They’re hearing all these new terms and they’re probably thinking their kids are a little crazy,” said Knight.

Knight said Tuesday’s “Become a Tech-Savvy Parent” session was a first step toward closing the divide between students and parents when it comes to all the tech used in the classroom.

“Like, what is Schoology, what do you mean you’re collaborating, you’re sharing, I don’t understand what’s going on,” Knight explained. “So we though we’d bring it to the parents that way they don’t feel they’re so far behind their students.”

Knight and other teachers demonstrated apps such as Schoology and Google Docs that connect students to teachers and each other as they complete assignments. Others showed how lessons can easily be turned into study games to help kids learn even outside of class on their cell phones.

“It’s pushing them beyond their comfort zone,” said Knight.

Knight said students are more engaged and end up learning more as a result of the technology.

“It’s pushing them to grow as a learner and that’s what you want them to do,” something that Knight said can only serve them in an increasingly global marketplace.

“I think it’s gonna push our students to broaden their horizons and see what else is out there beyond their scope,””Now with the technology their world has gotten smaller.”

Teachers hope to have even more of these meetings in the near future and see even more parents coming out to learn about the technology in use in their students’ classrooms.