Digital Textbooks Could Save Schools Up to $3 Billion a Year

It might sound counter intuitive, but placing a digital tablet in every American student’s hands will actually save public schools $3 billion per year. AllThingsD’s Peter Kafka reported on an education gathering last week hosted by the FCC and the Department of Education.

Project RED, an organization dedicated to research surrounding technology’s impact on education, provided some important data for analyzing tablet vs. textbook costs. Traditional learning with textbooks costs $3,871/student/year which includes teacher attendance, paper/toner/ink, assessments, and supplemental software/hardware materials. Though a tablet could cost upward of $250/student, the total cost of “new learning” with digital tablets would be $60 less per student per year. This also includes hardware, paperwork, teacher attendance, and supplemental information costs.

With 49 million students enrolled in public elementary and secondary schools in the U.S., schools can save up to $3 billion of savings per year. With public school funding slowly (in come places rapidly) decreasing, public schools need to take advantage of all the savings they can get. To me, the most valuable aspect of digital tablets is the opportunity for adaptive learning. For a student that’s either excelling too quickly or learning at a slower pace, the tablet can become a different textbook within seconds. Students can access waht they want and need to learn right away without having to hunt down the next grade’s textbook or visiting a library. The accessbility of content is priceless and with hardware builders creating Android tablets at lower and lower costs, the digital textbook will become more affordable. If only we could find a way to make our electronics last longer…

 

Ashley Yang

Account Executive at TriplePoint's SF office

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About Ashley Yang

Account Executive at TriplePoint's SF office