Chromebooks

Nina Russell, Seth Dooley, and Krissie Byers

Pro

By Nina Russell

As most of the student body well knows already, the rumor on the street is that we will be getting some sort of laptop or other form of technology next year, which will most likely be the Google Chromebook. We will be arguing on which would be better: to get the Chromebooks, or to keep our textbooks and paper worksheets instead. I am personally in favor of getting the Google Chromebooks, and I will explain why in this article.

There are a lot of upsides to upgrading our technology here at Central. This is the future, and the textbooks are of the past. Textbooks are a burden for every student. I do not need to go into the details on how heavy all of these books are, and how much space they take up. Taking these books home for homework is a pain, and carrying them in your backpack is practically impossible unless you want to develop back or shoulder problems. Most of these class textbooks will be opened less than 25 times per year, and contain barely any information that students actually need. It’s also not a very fun time when students draw and write all over the pages of the textbooks, and physically tear them up one year, and a student is stuck with the ruined textbook the next year. The good part about the Chromebooks in this sense is that they’re lighter than textbooks, contain every bit of information that a student needs at the tip of their fingers, and if a student decides to ruin it, they can pay for it.

The technology of this generation is getting more and more advanced and efficient. Students can turn in their assignments seconds after completing them, no matter how far behind the rest of the class is. For the teachers, this will also eliminate cheating because students cannot discreetly share answers on their laptops. This technology will connect the students more, and will help them to connect with classes more. Not only that, but computer literacy is a very important thing to possess in these times, and these will be a way to teach that to students who have never owned a computer or laptop before. I have owned a Chromebook before, but quickly took it back because it was basically the Google Chrome browser with no other features. This, for the students, is good. It’s a lot harder to download enormous files or get viruses.

The Chromebooks will be very good for our school as well. Not only will they teach students responsibility, but there will be no excuse for students to lose their homework because there is an offline mode as well. We will be learning a lot more, faster, bringing us above schools around us all the same. It’s very easy to download ebooks and apps for the Chromebook to help students study and accelerate. Maybe in the future, students will not even have to stay at school for PASS.

You are probably worrying about what will happen if you break it—If you get the affordable insurance policy (which actually IS affordable, you can pay a monthly plan) and you break it, the school will fix it or even get you a new one. Now you are probably wondering: What if I don’t break it? Will I have wasted all of that money? The answer is NO. Rumor has it that all of the money that you pay for insurance not used in fixing your laptop will be put towards you paying for the Chromebook, so you can keep it when you graduate.

One more upside to the Chromebooks: no more papercuts.

You decide: Chromebooks or Textbooks?

Con

By Seth Dooley and Krissie Byers

As most know, Central High School is advancing in its technology. Starting next year, Google Chromebooks will be added to the learning curriculum. As much as this could improve school learning, it could hinder the school in many different ways. One of these differences includes student’s textbooks. Instead of physical textbooks, the Chromebooks will have the textbooks on them. This could be seen as both good and bad.

One argument would be the recentness of a textbook. On a tablet, it could be updated as soon as needed. On a textbook, you’d have to buy a new book to get the most recent information. Sure, that’s true, but books are more durable. Think about it, if a Chromebook is dropped it may snap wiring or crack the screen, making it useless and in need of repair, which will cost more money. Yes, Central will give you a chance to buy insurance, but most of the student body will turn it away, claiming, “That won’t happen to me,” or “That’s a waste of money.” Yes, you may take great care of it, but you’re forgetting the variables. What if you slip and it falls? What if it gets stolen? What if it simply shorts out? These will all be pressed onto the person who possesses it, and that will cost more money to fix it. What about books? I’ve seen it countless times, if a spine falls off a book, the teacher simply tapes it back on. A roll of duct tape is less than five dollars, and you can use it to fix many books.

Another thing would be losing the Chromebook. If we carry them to every class and our own homes, it is almost sure that someone in this school will lose it. We’re teenagers. It is going to happen. With the books, our school has mostly been using classroom sets lately. Since the books never leave the classrooms, they never get lost. And even if it was brought out of class, buying another book would be cheaper than buying another Chromebook. Also, when you lose your Chromebook, you lose all of the work you had on it. This includes the notes you typed on it, the pages you bookmarked to help you from class, the assignments you may have had saved on there, even emails teachers sent you. When you lose a book, you only lose the book.

When we receive the Chromebooks, we will feel obligated to buy insurance. I already do. That’s extra money we have to fork out from our and/or our parents’ pockets. With books, we have to pay absolutely no money. Exceptions would be breaking them so badly that they cannot be repaired and losing them. Even with that, it’s still cheaper. You might say, “Well you don’t HAVE to buy insurance.” You’re right, we don’t. Accidents happen, though. If we don’t buy insurance, we have to pay more money. It’s nerve racking and ridiculous.

These are just a few of the most obvious problems. Getting rid of the textbooks and forcing the students to “advance in technology” just doesn’t suit my fancy. There may be a few upsides to the Chromebooks that the downsides seem to outweigh. Also, think about the poor textbooks. We’re just abandoning them and disregarding their intelligent ways. (That’s a joke. They don’t really have feelings.) Seriously though, just throwing out the books completely seems like a waste and unneeded trouble. We’re fine where we are now. The only reason we need to advance is because we’re greedy to want the “next best thing” as some people would say.