Chantilly Pyramid implements pilot FCPSon program

Maura Olson, Arts & Style Editor

The new FCPSon program has changed the look of the classroom from paper and pencil notes to laptops and Google Classroom.

“We’re doing a lot of professional development with teachers to change teaching more than anything,” Principal Teresa Johnson said. “In order to keep up with the 21st century skills that we want kids to have, we really need to have the technology available when the teachers need it.”

With these changes, students have learned new techniques and have formed their own opinions about the laptops.

“I think it’s really cool that the county was willing to give us these resources to use for all the students,” freshman Andrew O’Rourke said. “I think it’s really helping to accelerate the learning process in the classroom.”

The computers have been providing more than just learning benefits.

“It does provide more flexibility for teachers,” Johnson said. “We didn’t have enough [laptop carts] for every classroom [in previous school years].”

Even though these computers have been a great source of learning for students, there have been some downsides during the initial process.

“I don’t think [we] as a population are responsible people, and giving everyone a computer is so much responsibility,” junior Brooke Bain said.

Johnson and the rest of the administrators have encouraged all staff members to try at least one new thing with technology this year. “Just one!” is the theme for the school year, as the administration understands that teachers as well as students are at different places in using technology, and that there will be some growing pains along the way as everyone gets used to working with the laptops on a regular basis.

“Trying these new things out has been a struggle for some folks and that’s okay,”Assistant Principal Mike Astudillo said. “The way we’ve approached it is to say ‘It doesn’t matter where you are with technology right now, it matters where you’re going.”

Even though students and staff members are still getting used to this new way of teaching and learning, the laptops have already helped us grow in our Charger community.

“The fact that every kid has a computer that has equal access to gain those kind of 21st century skills that they’re going to face when they get out into the ‘real world’- I think that is the key piece to all of this,” Astudillo said. “I think the greatest advantage of having these laptops is just the ability for teachers to now be able to shift their teaching and learning a little bit to provide some different ways for kids to approach the same old kind of problems.”