New laptops gain popularity despite technical glitches

The 20 new laptops in the upper school library are steadily increasing in popularity and usage despite initial glitches with connectivity. The librarians plan to solve further problems as they are uncovered.

Laptop sets in the library, the science department and the history department became available at the beginning of the school year to improve computer accessibility for individual students and classes.

Students who frequent the library often discovered the laptops immediately, and from there it was only a matter of time until word spread, Librarian Maureen Frank said. Head Librarian Shannon Acedo has also spoken at each grade level assembly to inform students of the laptops’ availability.

The newness of the program makes it no surprise that glitches have set back students, who sometimes encounter an error message while using the internet or logging onto the server. The librarians recommend that students tell them of any problems, which they note in a specific binder and bring to the attention of Computer Services. The most common problem brought to the librarians has been spotty connectivity with the new wireless internet and the school network. Certain areas of the library, for example, are prime spots for weak connections, while others have strong internet signals. If students bring up specific problems that prevent their working, the librarians will call Computer Services to identify and solve the problem. Students now have computer access in Silent Study, where they can get work done without being distracted by the noise that often fills the library’s technology center.

“I see a bunch of kids at their table, but they’re working” said Frank. “It allows kids to be communal, but [be productive] at the same time.”

Because of the extensive use of technology in the foreign language program, availability of computers for students has declined. Classes often take up the entire computer center, and even if free computers remain, teachers impose a quiet that deters large groups of students from using the center. Classes that are unable to book the library’s technology center and request the laptops have preference over student use. The library does not currently plan to add more laptops because there are other technology centers around campus.