HIGH POINT, N.C. — Montlieu Academy of Technology is leading Guilford County in academic growth, one year after a new education plan was implemented that included iPads for each student.
All 487 students received iPads this past year. Guilford County Schools reported earlier this month Montlieu’s EOG proficiency skyrocketed from 59.3 percent to 72.1 percent.
The school received $2.4 million in federal grants to help boost student performance. Boys and girls were separated, the school day was extended and teachers were rewarded for student success.
Four private sector benefactors put up a million dollars last year to support the experiment.
“We’re just terribly excited. We thought they’d do this well, maybe, the second or third year, but they’ve proven it in the first year,” said Jim Mevlin, of the Bryan Foundation.
For the first time ever, Montlieu Academy of Technology has a waiting list.
“For the first time, ever, Montlieu Academy of Technology, because we’re a magnet school, now has a waiting list for people wanting to be at our school and I think that does deserve a round of applause.”
Principal Ged O’Donnell said they feel like they have bucked the trend as many times when new programs are implemented, the statistics go down the first year. However, scores were up at Montlieu.
“For the first time, ever, Montlieu Academy of Technology, because we’re a magnet school, now has a waiting list for people wanting to be at our school,” said O’Donnell.
Lakesha McDougald said she sees the benefit of the technology in helping students learn at their own pace.
“Because not every child is on the same level, iPads let you learn at your own pace. So, you walk into a classroom and they’re all doing math but they’re doing it at their own level,” said McDougald.
McDougald and everyone else involved in the project know the culture of achievement helped turn the school around in a short amount of time.
Superintendent Mo Green said the program has been an amazing success.
“This is exactly what we want for each and every one of our schools: For our community to say, ‘Gosh, I want to send my kids there.’”