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County commission approves $1.5-million Chromebook purchase for schools

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WCS Education Committee (copy)

WCS Superintendent Jason Golden shared that the school intends to provide every student with a Chromebook for the 2020–2021 school year.

The Williamson County Board of Commissioners met remotely for a virtual meeting Monday night with a lengthy agenda largely consisting of end-of-year budget adjustments; however, one large item was passed to allow the Williamson County School District to plan for the upcoming school year.

The county commission approved the district’s purchase of 18,555 Chromebooks for the upcoming school year, an over $1.5 million purchase.

“Our plan is now to make a Chromebook available to every student,” said WCS Superintendent Jason Golden.

The district is pursuing this device-per-student strategy as it plans for three different scenarios — on-campus school, remote school and a hybrid model — come the fall semester dependent on the state of the coronavirus pandemic. For all three scenarios, the district has shared that it will be utilizing online tools, hence the large increase in Chromebooks.

Golden said that the schools are also looking into various solutions for the roughly 2% of WCS families without internet access and the 9% with spotty access. He also said that, because the district stripped its budget to the bare essentials due to the economic impact of COVID-19, he anticipates the schools will come to the board with additional needs as the year progresses.

For more information on the county, visit williamsoncounty-tn.gov. To learn more about the schools, visit wcs.edu.

The county commission will convene again on Monday, July 13 at 9 a.m. Details about the location — whether virtual or at the Williamson County Administrative Complex — will be listed on the county website closer to the meeting date.

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