The Holy Family Catholic Regional Division (HFCRD) Classroom Improvement Fund Committee’s proposal, which improves access to technology and specialized furniture for students, has been approved by Alberta Education. The proposal included using the $314,000 fund to purchase Chromebooks for grades six to nine students and sensory furniture for schools, which will be distributed based on school need and enrolment. Committee members, who are a mixture of Central Office staff, a Trustee and teacher representatives, strived to distribute the funds as evenly as possible across the division and reach as many students and schools as possible, which is why grades six to nine were selected. The Committee anticipates that 728 students will have access on a daily basis to a Chromebook.
“Chromebooks not only enhance inclusive education in the school environment but are quickly becoming a necessity. Chromebooks enable the students to be connected to a device they can use every day and in some cases need to use every day,” said Superintendent Betty Turpin. “Thank you to committee members for making decisions that are best for students. I am confident that these funds will improve classrooms across the division and set our students up for success.”
In the proposal, HFCRD’s Committee included that access to Chromebooks enhances inclusivity students’ 21st century learning skills, ensures equal opportunity if all students are using the same device, supports students affected by poverty, and reduces paper use.
The Classroom Improvement Fund (CIF) is a $75 million one-time grant given to school divisions across Alberta. The CIF was distributed to school divisions based on enrolment. Each school division was required to submit a proposal to be approved by Alberta Education. The funds are intended to address local needs identified by the school division. HFCRD’s committee, through a teacher survey, identified access to technology and specialized furniture as a priority for these funds.