GULFPORT, Miss. (WLOX) - Among the many health and economic issues brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, the health crisis also shined a light on the need for updated technology in schools and households across the nation.
“There’s more reliance on technology to enhance instruction,” said Director of Technology for the Gulfport School District Tracy Daniel-Hardy.
While some students across South Mississippi are coming back to in-person learning, Mississippi Connects is making sure public schools across the state are prepared in case the pandemic changes the curriculum back to distance learning.
The program is sending schools requested Chromebooks, iPads, Macs and other technologies to make sure education continues despite a potential spike in cases.
“The goal of that is to make sure that every student and teacher has a device accessible to them,” Daniel-Hardy said.
In a second delivery from the program, the Gulfport School District received more than 5,000 devices for students and teachers to use.
“This just makes my heart rejoice," Daniel-Hardy said.
The state’s Department of Education also made sure to unbox the devices and protect them with cases.
“It’s much easier to pull these out and set these up,” Daniel-Hardy said.
Now, the focus is getting everything ready for the classroom, by cataloging and organizing them by each school’s request.
“Once we get them over to the schools, they just have to distribute them to those classrooms and those teachers,” Daniel-Hardy said.
Administrators also hope to use the technology to continue class through any natural disasters.