El Paso ISD
Building a New “Toolbox” for Today’s Learners
El Paso ISD is one of the largest school districts in the nation. Its 95 campuses, which educate 62,000 students, sprawl across El Paso on the Mexican border. As a district, the teachers at El Paso ISD talk about the considerable challenges before them, and are urged by the district to update their toolboxes as educators.
Assisting English Language Learners
As the district moves forward with digital learning, one of the priorities is helping its large English Language Learner population gain English mastery. In addition to specialized software programs that help students with reading and language skills, technology also assists with critical oral work.
Storytelling is a great way in early literacy to get kids to expand their vocabulary and technology can lends itself to make it more interesting. The students are more engaged.
That engagement takes place with portable, digital storytelling kits that allow students to record their stories as they act them out, adding a tactile component that aids in learning. It also motivates students to put more effort into their stories.
Stretching Resources, Knocking Down Walls
El Paso ISD has also invested heavily in videoconferencing technology, which serves two purposes. Internally, the technology allows El Paso ISD to stretch resources by making dual credit classes available to students on multiple campuses. Additionally, videoconferencing is used to connect El Paso ISD students to classrooms in other cities.
Said Tim Holt, Director of Instructional Technology,
“The really important thing about video conferencing equipment and actually all web 2.0 tools is that it knocks down the walls of their campus. Students are no longer limited to staying within that classroom. It allows them to jump way beyond our geographical area.”