The Socorro Independent School District continues to invest in technology to advance teaching and learning at all campuses across the district. As part of Operation Future Ready efforts, the district has provided more than 17,000 students districtwide with laptops, tablets, and other mobile devices so that they have 24/7 access to digital learning.
For the 2018-19 school year, SISD was awarded the Technology Lending Grant by the Texas Education Agency to provide more students access to high-quality digital resources.
The $150,000 grant allowed SISD to expand its Digitally Nurturing Academics 1:1 program (one student to one laptop) to sixth-grade students at Salvador H. Sanchez Middle School, making it the first middle school in the district to give 100 percent of its student’s personal laptops for 24/7 access to digital learning. In addition, students now have access to 65 hot spots for access to digital instruction materials off campus.
DNA 1:1 started in 2014 and has expanded every year since the launch. This year, all students at Socorro and Pebble Hills high schools received a laptop. Seventh- and eighth-grade students at SPC. Rafael Hernando III Middle School, and Salvador H. Sanchez Middle School, eighth-grade students at John Drugan School, Socorro Middle, Sun Ridge Middle and Ernesto Serna School also were given laptops for the 2018-19 school year.
Team SISD students and educators also are participating in unique digital learning experiences, such as the University of Texas at El Paso’s Technology Exploration, or Tech-E program. The program recently earned the 2018 Campus Technology Impact Award in Teaching and Learning for making an extraordinary impact with technology for students and teachers.
SISD students were the first to take advantage of the program in the fall of 2016 with students from the district’s WIN Academy participating. Today, about 900 elementary and middle school children from 12 SISD campuses are participating in the Tech-E program.
The wide range of technologies taught in the program helps students learn about cyber security, how to use a 3-D program, and play games on a Raspberry Pi, a credit-card-sized computer that plugs into a keyboard and monitor. It also gives students a feel for the college experience since courses are conducted and students get a tour of UTEP.