Technology Takeover: Schoology Has An Active Role In Classrooms

Emma Dalke, Staff Writer

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At the end of last school year, certain teachers were asked to take a more active role in using technology. QHS purchased the program Schoology, a learning management system, to familiarize students with technology and better prepare them for their life after high school.

Jackie Stewart, Sara Betz, and Sharla Heightman have all taken initiative with technology in their classrooms.

Betz attended a national Schoology conference over the summer to prepare for her new role.

“AP US History is completely paperless. I’m taking slower steps  in my other classes,” Betz said.

She said some kids are frustrated with the technology because it is new.

“It is natural to have fear, but we are trying to break the technological barrier,” she added. “It’s not sunshine and rainbows everyday.”

Some challenges she’s faced are skill gaps and accessibility.

“Some students do not have internet access at home,” she commented.

Betz sees the benefit this technology provides for her students.

“My teaching has changed significantly. I do not have to  stand and deliver,” Betz said. “With  this technology you learn the curriculum better, quicker and more deeply.”

Betz said her AP students grades are up, and “this provides students with new ways of learning; it is far more efficient. This technology allows students to do what works for them, more of a choice, more opportunity.”

Betz plans on continuing this next year. “The school district is working hard to bridge the gap; we are headed in the right direction,” she said.

Heightman, a math teacher, expressed her nerves on moving math online.

“I was very nervous at first, but it has been a really good resource for students,” she said. Heightman said there were a few hiccups in the beginning but students have grown accustomed to it.

“Kids like the ability to view notes at home” since she records all the notes and explanations from her class and puts them online for her students.

There have been a few problems involving certain assignments, but she said kids see the value. She plans on keeping up with the technology in years to come.

Stewart, a chemistry teacher, got into technology accidentally. She attended a conference and signed up to to learn about technology; she never thought she’d actually use it.

“Technology hasn’t changed my teaching, just enhanced parts of it,” she said. This technology allows her to create interactive notes, which helps her students learn.

“There are a lot of possibilities I’d like to explore,” she added.

She has seen a bit of a rise in grades because  “when students understand the material, they have more positive attitudes.”

She has not heard any complaints from her students and plans on continuing next year.

Julian McKenzie, a sophomore in AP US History, also commented on the switch to technology: “I love technology and I was excited about the switch.”

He said that some disadvantages are that not all kids have internet access and things can go wrong with the internet.

“I see my grades getting better; it is nice to be able to log on and check whenever you need to,” he added.

Assistant Principal Sarah Gass said it is always a positive thing when teachers are taking time and looking at their curriculum.

“We have definitely been looking at opportunities to move classes online; there of many advantages and disadvantages to it,” Gass said

She mentioned that schools are not the same as they used to be and our district does not need to look the same.

“We have done a couple things to help out the teachers; we’ve had [several] Skyward professional development opportunities,” she added.

Gass said the biggest problem has been student access. “We want all students to have equal opportunity; we do not want students to be afraid to ask for help,” she said.





The Student News Site of Quincy Senior High School
Technology Takeover: Schoology Has An Active Role In Classrooms