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Investing in tablets and laptops a wise decision for future

Virtual learning for every student is the goal of a $366,480 investment into laptops and electronic tablets in the Montoursville Area School District.

That sounds like a lot of money for a district that not long ago was in financial turmoil and board upheaval over an expensive high school construction project.

Nonetheless, we have to agree with board member William Ruffing, who called the decision to invest in the technology “a no-brainer.”

The fact is, the COVID-19 pandemic may have sent youngsters home from the physical classroom early this year, but the next school year that traditionally would begin in four months from now must go on.

The state Department of Education has indicated that it will not waive the requirement for 180 days of instruction in the next school year. School officials throughout Pennsylvania, including our rural region, must prepare for that reality.

It is the duty of the public school system to prepare our youths for the future — theirs as well as ours. The bigger mandate is that today’s youths be ready to take on the world as they enter adulthood. They are the ones to whom we will pass the baton. The aging process will not wait for a pandemic to pass and the “all clear” to be signaled.

We also know that we are to expect a “new normal” after COVID-19. Remote learning is highly likely to be part of the new normal.

The trend, we suspect, will be to invest more of our future tax dollars in technology and the development of young brains than we do on large buildings, school buses and crowded learning environments.

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