As students walk through the halls of Zeeland West High School, their backpacks are a little lighter. Stacks of paper and some textbooks have been replaced by the Apple iPad — one for every high-schooler in the district. That’s 1,800 iPads between the two high schools.
And it’s just the beginning for Zeeland Public Schools, which embarked on an ambitious project this fall that will give a tablet to every student in grades 3-12 — the only district in Michigan to do so.
The program represents one of the most aggressive in the country and has garnered national attention. With each student taking responsibility for one, the school uses the iPad for assigning classwork, testing and communicating with students. Some teachers have gone paperless.