Hebert said he does not see the school getting all the students computers or other tech devices any time soon. However, he said he foresees the district looking at a “flipped classroom,” where a lot of the lecture materials are made available for student access electronically and then the classroom component becomes a guided-work session with the teacher.
“There are all kinds of resources available, it’s really a matter of organizing them and putting them into an environment that students can access,” he said.
One obstacle in the way is accessibility. Not based on survey results, but from talking with people, Hebert said he has heard that the towns of Hartwick and Pierstown are areas with some connectivity issues.
According to Hebert, even though some might be able to get access, the cost for service may not be feasible. There was no data in the survey that would help determine just how many people this would be true for.
“We are aware that is probably the case in many circumstances, and we would like to look into the possibility of opening up some venues and localities, perhaps like the Hartwick library, where people can go if they don’t have access. As we expand online utilization we want to make sure everybody has access,” Hebert said.
Juli Sharratt said she and fellow town of Hartiwck board member Anita Briggs-Jones are in the preliminary stages of trying to acquire a cell phone/communications tower in Hartwick. Sharratt sent out an email stating calls were made to dozens of companies, but only a couple returned those calls.
“Our population and our terrain are working against us,” said Sharratt in the letter. “But on a much brighter note, Anita and I are in discussions with Clarity Connect who provides land-based high-speed internet.”