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Why Hoboken is Throwing
Away All of its Student Laptops

WNYC News, by By Jill Barshay

Original Article

Posted By:mikeyt64, 7/29/2014 3:20:55 PM

Inside Hoboken’s combined junior-senior high school is a storage closet. Behind the locked door, some mothballed laptop computers are strewn among brown cardboard boxes. Others are stacked one atop another. Dozens more are stored on mobile computer carts, many of them on their last legs. That’s all that remains from a failed experiment to assign every student a laptop at Hoboken Junior Senior High School. It began five years ago with an unexpected windfall of stimulus money from Washington, D.C., and good intentions to help the district’s students,

Comments:
The road to disaster and huge losses of money is paved with hair brained theories of liberal spend-alls in Washington.

      


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Reply 1 - Posted by: Pros7767, 7/29/2014 3:33:13 PM     (No. 9945015)

More taxpayers dollars thrown away by the elites in DC. Shocking. s/o

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Reply 2 - Posted by: mc squared, 7/29/2014 3:34:57 PM     (No. 9945017)

I´ve seen parents buy new laptops for their kids after a year because ´it broke´.
But this is our money.

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Reply 3 - Posted by: FenwayFrank, 7/29/2014 3:36:57 PM     (No. 9945023)

Dump them in the road in front of Bill Gates´ house. He was a big proponent of this idiocy. Let him throw them away.

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Reply 4 - Posted by: BeatleJeff, 7/29/2014 3:40:14 PM     (No. 9945032)

"... teenagers with laptops are still… teenagers."

And so are most politicians with access to wasting taxpayer dollars!


"This summer, Hoboken school staff will go through the laptops one by one, writing down the serial numbers and drafting a resolution for the school board to approve their destruction."

I suggest contacting the IRS. I hear that they are experts at destroying computers.

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Reply 5 - Posted by: Patchy Groundfog, 7/29/2014 3:41:50 PM     (No. 9945034)

Pearls before swine.

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Reply 6 - Posted by: lazyman, 7/29/2014 3:43:47 PM     (No. 9945038)

The laptops are gone but not the debt that we went into to buy them.

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Reply 7 - Posted by: corndoggies, 7/29/2014 3:54:08 PM     (No. 9945054)

Two years ago we got 3 tablets for our older girls and one Nabi for the then 10 year old. A few weeks ago she wanted to trade her Nabi for a cheap tablet her aunt had. I told her you´re trading a $200 tablet for a cheap piece of crap and I don´t want to hear one complaint when you don´t like it. Well....she thinks she´s cool cause she´s almost 12 now and she grabbed it off the end table and dropped it face down and cracked the heck out of the screen. I had to leave the room to laugh. Chock one up for parent karma. It had a cover on it but face down even a cover doesn´t help. I tell my husband big pain, big lesson, little pain, little lesson.

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Reply 8 - Posted by: RISailor, 7/29/2014 3:55:33 PM     (No. 9945056)

I did a quick check of Hoboken in Wikipedia. Surprise, it´s an upscale city, growing fast too. Still, looks like the school administration is run by dopes.
This lack of computer use preparation is probably symptomatic of their poor school system top to bottom.

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Reply 9 - Posted by: XDm, 7/29/2014 3:58:39 PM     (No. 9945062)

but...but...but
Don´t you see? None of this matters to the left because their INTENTIONS were good.
They seem to forget (or ignore) the old adage "never confuse effort with results"

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Reply 10 - Posted by: heartsurgeon, 7/29/2014 4:15:36 PM     (No. 9945087)

at least someone tried it on a "small" scale and discovered it´s worthless. Better that then roll it out nationally....

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Reply 11 - Posted by: TarAndFeathers, 7/29/2014 4:15:55 PM     (No. 9945089)

And what will be learned from this expensive disaster?

Absolutely nothing!

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Reply 12 - Posted by: jeffkinnh, 7/29/2014 4:36:08 PM     (No. 9945120)

My significant other´s school gives iPads to kids in 3rd and 7th grade and they have not seen the problem of destruction that was described in the article. Sure, things happen. She tripped over her system´s cord a couple years back and broke the screen. But in general, the kids take pretty good care of the iPads. Could this be an inner city issue where people don´t know how to value things?

They also have policies in place that help. Unless they are being used in a lesson, the iPads are put away. The teachers have and continue to get training on how to integrate computers into learning.

As suggested in the article, schools that buy tech without a plan how to get the best use out of it are wasting their money. They need to hire people to implement and administer a good system.

The complaint about everyone knowing the wireless access password is an example. They don´t change it every 6 months? They can also program routers to only accept specific systems by the MAC address of their network card. Yup, it takes a little more setup and support but it keeps the network running and usable.

To a tech knowledgeable person, the article screams of ignorance. Of course the program failed.

Reminds one of BOCare.

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Reply 13 - Posted by: antiquegolf, 7/29/2014 4:43:11 PM     (No. 9945129)

The money wasted on computers in Hoboken is a vapor droplet in the bucket, as $ billions are poured down ratholes each year by leftist social activists who control public schools in population centers. The high school just outside Denver where I worked for 14 years paid $4 million to "educational" consultants between 2009-2012 in the name of student achievement. The principals and and district level officials gushed about the canned teaching methods and organizational systems they bought, but standardized test scores declined during that era. Those administrators are gone. Their replacements are even further left.

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Reply 14 - Posted by: planetgeo, 7/29/2014 5:09:12 PM     (No. 9945171)

This is the type of article that elicits too-hasty comments of pre-conceived notions to make a political point.

Technology resources (and significant spending on such resources) alone do not necessarily improve educational results. But incorporated into a well-planned program, and implemented by well-trained teachers, the results can be amazing. Even in schools in disadvantaged areas. Sometimes especially in such disadvantaged areas. I can speak from first-hand experience in that regard.

The lesson here is not to be prematurely dismissive about such efforts.

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Reply 15 - Posted by: Jethro bo, 7/29/2014 5:26:44 PM     (No. 9945190)

It never fails to amaze how elected officals have noo idea how the real world works. S they gve enough money to throw computers at kids. Adnd probably thought just handing out computers would be like wishing for a unicorn and getting one. In the real world, companies invest heavily in their IT infrastucture. Goobernment just spends money and doesn´t care about whether it operates or not.

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Reply 16 - Posted by: shamus, 7/29/2014 5:44:45 PM     (No. 9945212)

And people in their right mind want Chris Chistie for president?

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Reply 17 - Posted by: paperpuncher, 7/29/2014 5:48:41 PM     (No. 9945217)

I would not buy my kids laptops period. They had computers at home they had computers at school. Why in the world did they need a laptop?

What an absolute waste of our money. How many meals for the downtrodden could be purchased for the price of one laptop?

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Reply 18 - Posted by: FleetUSA, 7/29/2014 6:06:06 PM     (No. 9945234)

Yes #13. Obamacare precisely

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Reply 19 - Posted by: Mijcraw, 7/29/2014 6:17:30 PM     (No. 9945239)

Technology is not the answer for a failed process, technology is a tool to use in a process. That money would had been better spent on elementary students in that district though meeting the state core requirements in reading, writing and arithmetic ..... Today there would have brighter middle/junior high students entering a new school year in September, instead you have higher paid teachers, with better benefits then the men and women providing our protection, beautiful football stadiums and graduating seniors or can´t perform well enough to enter the job force.....shame on those leaders playing politics with our children´s futures.

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Reply 20 - Posted by: southernboy, 7/29/2014 6:30:13 PM     (No. 9945248)

Remember Headstart in 1966 or so? Oakland Public Schools received pallets of audio recorders, record players and such. Kids were allowed to take them home. I was in charge of inventory. The word was not to worry if inventory was short. “They probably don´t have one in the home….so now they do. It’s all for a good cause."

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Reply 21 - Posted by: Bazi, 7/29/2014 6:49:04 PM     (No. 9945269)

Oh, I can top that. Every public school student pre-k through 12th grade is going to get their very own iPad in St. Paul, MN. Teachers will of course get Apple laptops.

The cost is 5.5 million for the first year and a cool 8 million, each year afterwards. These are the same schools who have asked/begged for donations of crayons, paper, rulers, backpacks etc. Let the donations of iTune cards begin.

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Reply 22 - Posted by: trapper, 7/29/2014 7:25:06 PM     (No. 9945312)

The problem isn´t laptops, teenagers, or even computers. The problem is setting out on a new course with no plan, or a flawed or incomplete plan. No different from buying whiteboards, but not buying the markers and erasers for them. It happens all the time in organizations, including business and government.

The trick is to learn the right lessons from it. Perhaps loading word processing and math software and making them available for checkout as needed would have worked out better. But then, why even load math software on a laptop when a math calculator does it better, easier, and cheaper? The technology is useful and helpful (after all, we are all typing our responses here on a computer, smartphone, or ipad) if deployed appropriately to the students´ actual needs.

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Reply 23 - Posted by: Quigley, 7/29/2014 7:49:28 PM     (No. 9945342)

Dimocrat politicians just want the photo opp of the "mission accomplished" moment when the funds are appropriated.

Then they move on to the next one. Drive by politicians I suppose.

And then there is no one to manage the project, or it is unmanageable, or both.

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Reply 24 - Posted by: caljeepgirl, 7/29/2014 8:20:28 PM     (No. 9945382)

I can´t afford a laptop or IPAD, etc. so why am I paying for someone else to have one?!?
Also, why are they going to destroy them? I can´t believe there isn´t some other use for them somewhere.

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Reply 25 - Posted by: RISailor, 7/29/2014 9:48:25 PM     (No. 9945483)

I read today that the Superintendent of Schools in the story has moved on to another NJ county.

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Reply 26 - Posted by: ColonialAmerican1623, 7/30/2014 12:13:31 AM     (No. 9945643)

In two surrounding counties, one group Latino and the other black, the kids were given laptops to help them succeed. Not long before they were lost. Lost like sold or pawned.

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Reply 27 - Posted by: Tianne, 7/30/2014 8:13:47 PM     (No. 9947055)

The student laptop giveaway was tried in Detroit a few years ago. The day after computer distribution, local pawn shops were inundated with new computers - not only the students, but also the teachers, were exchanging them for cash. It´s surprising that the Hoboken district still has some computers in its possession.

Like the Detroit free-expensive-athletic-shoes-for-each-and-every-student-who-shows-up-on-student-count-day program, the free laptop program became immediately abused and unsustainable.

Both government and school officials everywhere have yet to absorb the lesson that if one doesn’t earn what one receives, it will not be cherished, protected, preserved, nor appreciated.


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Why Hoboken is Throwing
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Posted By: mikeyt64- 7/29/2014 3:20:55 PM     Post Reply
Inside Hoboken’s combined junior-senior high school is a storage closet. Behind the locked door, some mothballed laptop computers are strewn among brown cardboard boxes. Others are stacked one atop another. Dozens more are stored on mobile computer carts, many of them on their last legs. That’s all that remains from a failed experiment to assign every student a laptop at Hoboken Junior Senior High School. It began five years ago with an unexpected windfall of stimulus money from Washington, D.C., and good intentions to help the district’s students,



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