Tuesday, July 15, 2008

SmartBoards: Are they the answer? Part 2

Ok , so we talked last time about how SmartBoards are real popular, but have some issues the competent school administrator needs to be aware of.
Last time it was the revelation that they were NOT PROJECTION DEVICES. So when you spend $1200 dollars on a SmartBoard, you still need a projection device and..........a computer to hook up to the projection device (don't say, "everybody knows that, too!" cause believe me, they don't).

So here goes part two: the mounting and other hidden costs.

The SmartBoards I have seen purchased have always been without casters (wheels), 'cause everybody thinks they can just mount them on the wall like hanging a conventional whiteboard.......which is why, no lie, a large percentage of schools have had SmartBoards on site for months before their district or custodial staff could get them up.
This is especially in true in schools that had enough money to buy 25 SmartBoards, but not enough to mount them, so unless they do it themselves, which in some districts is against collective bargaining agreements, they aren't going to have them going until January. (And if it were an easy thing to do, I wouldn't have heard so many complaints from colleagues about them sitting around.) In addition, if you are using video projectors, you either have to mount those in the ceiling (around $1000) or purchase some kind of cart for them. I will say I have a different idea about all of this, but you'll have to wait 'til part 4 of this series. Read on, reply, comment, get mad (I'd love an argument about this issue), fire off a response!

Part 3 next!

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