Myrtle Beach middle schoolers get iPads Monday

iPads for students being unloaded Monday morning. Source: Horry County Schools on Facebook
iPads for students being unloaded Monday morning. Source: Horry County Schools on Facebook

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Middle school students are coming back to school in the new year with a new classroom addition: starting Monday morning at Myrtle Beach Middle School, iPads are being issued to every single student in the classroom.

During the entire month of January, the district will be going to different middle schools and issuing the iPads. This month, students will be learning how to use them and getting acclimated.

The district spent $5 million making this happen. iPads will be issued to all the students who have signed consent forms from their parents. The first iPad delivery will happen right at 7 a.m. Monday at MBMS. Then, high schools will be next to get devices. The plan is for all school levels in the district will be using personalized iPads in the next three years.

The Executive Director of Technology says the Horry County School District may not be the first to add iPads to the classroom, but it may be the first to do it in this way.

"We're not just taking the devices and putting them in the hands of students," explained Charles Hucks, The Horry County School District Executive Director of Technology. "And continuing to operate the classroom as we have in the past. With the introduction of this device, we're making the transition to the blended learning model."

Gone are the days of a computer lab, as the blended learning model is the new future of Horry County classrooms. It's a mix of learning from a teacher, and learning through online instruction. The iPads will be a central part of daily classes, as students will use them throughout the day. Across the district, the goal is to eventually make it where all primary learning will happen with a digital device and students will even be able to take it home to do homework.

While middle schools are getting iPads this month, the district is already looking ahead at other grades. There may be a mix of devices and tablets - each grade grouping will have a specialized committee to test out which device will work best at each grade level. Next in line to get devices are the high schools, and then the elementary schools. The district hopes to have personalized devices for students at all grade levels by the year 2016.

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