In the past month, East installed six TV monitors around the school in various places that will have announcements running on them all day. However, both the announcements through the PA system and the video announcements will still be played.
“The video announcements are still going to play in the classrooms, and announcements are still going to be read over the PA, because that’s the source of where so many kids get their information,” Assistant Principal Jeremy Higgins, who originally came up with the idea for the monitors said. “The monitors are just going to be to supplement those.”
The monitors cost between $2,300-$3,600 apiece, plus an additional fee for installation. Some of this money came from the East Fund, a donation account set up by East parents to fund classroom programs, technology and professional development in the school. The rest of the money came from Capital Outlay budget, which Higgins says is money set aside for “big ticket items” like technology and equipment.
Announcements aren’t the only thing the monitors will be used for.
“We can also provide programming, videotaping of athletic events and when the counselors want to announce college visits,” Principal Karl Krawitz said.
The installation of these monitors has confused and angered some members of the East community. Some, such as sophomore Kathryn Peterson, think they’re a waste of money.
“I would say it isn’t worth the money,” Peterson said. “I mean nobody seems to listen to announcements well enough already when they’re sitting in class and I don’t think they would pay more attention to them when they are quickly passing by trying to get to their next class, and talking to friends.”
English teacher Mrs. Birt think the monitors are a good idea.
“I think it will be an adjustment,” Mrs. Birt said. “Honestly I think it makes sense. I kind of prefer the system where we just let that scroll all day long, I think it makes perfect sense.”
Others, like senior Will Cray, think the monitors won’t work.
“I don’t think kids will pay attention if it’s text,” Cray said. “If it’s video, are kids supposed to clog up the halls to watch? I think they’re a bad idea.”
Higgins says he hopes this won’t be a problem.
“Hopefully kids will get the hang of the fact that they can just glance at the monitors as they pass by, instead of clogging up the halls,” Higgins said.
According to Dr. Krawitz, these monitors have been needed for a long time.
“We’re far behind our colleague schools that have these,” Dr. Krawitz said. “When it comes to technology, this school is so far behind, it’s pathetic.”
The idea of getting these monitors has come up before. According to Krawitz, the only reason they didn’t buy them at that time was because they didn’t look at the East Fund as a resource, but instead they looked at the Capital Outlay budget. Upon looking into the Capital Outlay budget, Krawitz decided that the school could afford the investment.
Announcements will begin to be played on the monitors starting at the end of the month.