Chromebook case, projector bids approved
The Marshalltown Schools push for further technology in classrooms took another step Monday as the school board approved a set of bids for new projectors and Chromebook cases.
In all, the board approved bids for 228 new projectors, accompanied by 280 ceiling mount kits, as well as 440 new Chromebook cases for Miller Middle School students.
“Are projectors still the way to go? As opposed to TVs?” board member Mike Miller asked district Director of Technology Josh Wesley.
Wesley said the projectors are still the most convenient and cost-effective way of displaying information in Marshalltown classrooms across the district compared to other means, like televisions or interactive white boards. He said most classrooms are already set up with wiring specific to projectors and putting in television replacements would require not only buying new TV units, but also doing costly rewiring work.
“These projectors and kits will be used to replace a good portion of the projectors in the entire district,” Wesley said.
The projector purchase will be the more expensive of the two purchases approved Monday, coming in at about $160,300 from St. Paul-based Tierney Brothers Inc. That was the lowest of the nine bids the district received for the new equipment.
The Chromebook case purchase is estimated at $11,400 and the new cases will be used to extend the useful lifespan of the more expensive devices they protect. The case bid approved Monday from New Jersey-based SHI International Corp. was the lowest of the six bids the district got back.
The Chromebooks for the Miller students were previously purchased and Wesley said the delay with the case purchase was due to the need to design and manufacture the cases.
He brought an example with him to the meeting, showing the board a Chromebook in one of the cases approved for purchase.
“It’s a pretty durable case. It can take a beating,” Wesley said.
He and the district technology department have been working toward a one-to-one Chromebook-to-student ratio for students across the district, along with a replacement cycle for student and teacher devices.
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