When 14 Grand Island Elementary School fifth graders head off to Lloyd Johnson Jr. High in the fall, they will be taking the gift of technology with them.
The Grand Island Parents’ Club presented the students at their promotion ceremony on Thursday with new Samsung Chromebooks, Kindle Amazon Fire HD tablets, or another choice in computer equipment.
“Our Parents’ Club does wonderful things for our students,” said Principal Summer Shadley. “It’s one of the benefits of such a small school.”
Students had the choice of 11.6-inch Chromebooks or refurbished laptops with a $60 share of cost, or refurbished desktop computers, new printers, or new Kindle tablets, at no cost.
Most selected the Chromebooks, considered the easiest devices to set up and manage. Since 2012, schools are the largest category of customer to use that operating system.
“Here at Grand Island we have 1-on-1 Chromebooks in the classroom, so the students are used to using them,” said Barbara Bair, Parents’ Club president. “That will continue at Lloyd Johnson.”
Gary Gasperson, Jr., 11, who students and teachers can always turn to for help with just about any electronic, was among 10 students to select the Chromebooks.
“What I like about the Chromebooks is that they are new, while the laptops are refurbished,” Gasperson said. “I intend to use mine a lot.”
Bair said the money for the computer equipment came from the Parents’ Club primary fundraiser, the annual tri-tip dinner and silent auction held during the spring. Student projects are also funded through the sale of See’s Candies in the fall, she said.
The 14 Grand Island students advancing to Lloyd Johnson will join a student body population of about 140 sixth, seventh, and eighth graders, Shadley said. They anticipate graduating from high school in 2024.
Bair said the goal of the Parents’ Club in gifting the computer equipment was to make sure the kids from Colusa County’s small community of Grimes are well prepared for the demands of junior high and high school.
“We want all of our students to be successful,” she said. ■