Santee Elementary became the recipient of the ConnectEd grant in 2014, an initiative from former President Barrack Obama. Apple later joined the ConnectEd initiative. It allowed for underserved schools to have the necessary technology to teach children in a way that gives them those 21st century thinking skills, which will be needed for jobs we know our students are capable and deserving of doing. After much planning and teacher professional development, students finally received their iPads in May 2016 at the Apple Student Rollout event at Santee Elementary.
As soon as students had received their iPads and teachers had an iPad mini and a MacBook Air, the question become, "And now what?" Teachers want to be able to use the products effectively to have students go from being consumers of products to being producers of products. Teachers have been given a several days of professional development throughout the 2016-2017 school year which has been great so far...
But Apple knows that we can get even deeper into this professional development and want to help the 114 schools that are a part of the ConnectEd program maximize student achievement with the use of our new technology. In order to do this, Apple held a ConnectEd Academy in Dallas, Texas from February 9-12. Ms. Reyes and three Santee teachers (Mrs. Kimberly, Mr. Cardona, and Ms. Orozco) were able to attend this conference. At the conference, the Santee team was able to gather deeper knowledge about how to use the technology in a more efficient way, which they will be presenting this information to the rest of the teachers. Furthermore, all 300 people in attendance at the conference were able to hear Ms. Reyes speak about Santee's vision and mission. She recollects where Santee was at one point, how far we've come so far, and where we see ourselves going as a school.
Santee, oh the places we'll go!