Learning First

Empower Every Learner

Learning First is a comprehensive plan to purposefully integrate innovative teaching and learning strategies with technology. The program is part of the district's efforts to realize objectives identified in Goal 1 of the district's strategic plan, Navigate 28

The program was launched following a yearlong study by the Innovate 28 Committee, a diverse group of teachers, administrators and board members explored: 
Innovative learning spaces,
Technology curriculum, 
Instructional practices,
Access and devices, and
Personalized learning


Engage, Enhance and Extend

“Learning First” gets its name from the book “Learning First, Technology Second” by Liz Kolb. In the text, Kolb outlines a framework in which instructional technology can engage, enhance, and extend learning in powerful ways. While teachers are already doing this in classrooms, the initiative will take it to the next level. 

iPad Environment

The district is transitioning to an iPad environment over three years beginning in 2018-19. After the Innovate 28 Committee narrowed the device selection to just a few models, iPads were selected as the most versatile and engaging device for students following a classroom pilot in early 2018. They shared their findings with the Board of Education in March 2018.

Students and teachers in kindergarten, third grade and sixth grade received individual iPads with keyboards at the beginning of the 2018-19 school year. Devices previously used by students in those grades were redistributed to enhance device access for the other grades while older devices were retired.

In the following years, additional students will receive new iPads so that by year three, all students will have an assigned iPad. When the rollout is complete, students will receive new iPads every three years.

Students will still use laptops for specialty areas in science, STEM and art classes.

Personal devices

Students in junior high have the option to bring home the devices, while K-5 students leave devices at school. The take-home option is intended to limit screen time for our youngest students, while affording our junior high students the opportunity to complete homework assignments and work on projects as needed. A comprehensive Internet filtering system is active on the device even outside of school. Parent workshops around digital citizenship and the use of technology are also being held and planned.