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County schools to get iPads for special needs students

Some Lincoln County students will soon be learning on iPads, as the county school board approved a budget amendment Monday night to purchase 16 of the tablets.

Assistant Superintendent Letha Presley requested the acquisition of the iPads with educational and developmental apps to be used with special needs students.

The tablet computers will be utilized with the life skills class at Enterprise, the autistic class at Loyd Star and the developmentally delayed class at West Lincoln.

Presley acknowledged the success of the tablets in other districts in the state and plans to receive assistance in implementing them in the classrooms from a teacher in Rankin County where the tools are currently being used.

The 16 iPads will cost less than $500 apiece.

The budget amendment also includes an intended $17,000 to be allocated from federal funds to assist the district with indirect costs such as electricity cost.

New playground equipment for preschool students also will be provided with some of the funding.

In other measures, the board approved Dr. Stacy Adcock, transportation and vocational director of the district, to purchase an agri-science-led curriculum package for each agri-science program in the district.

Three packages will be purchased at a total cost of $35,985.

The Office of Vocational and Technical Education, part of the Mississippi Department of Education, will provide funding for the packages.

The board also approved the disposal of fixed assets such as broken lawn mowers and old textbooks.

During his report, Superintendent Terry Brister reiterated district teachers’ concentration on testing during this time.

He also mentioned the district’s long anticipation of an appropriation bill to be signed by the state.

“Buddy, it’s frustrating waiting,” Brister said.

The board will hold a special called meeting Monday, April 22, at 5 p.m. to approve 2013-2014 personnel recommendations and 2013 budget revisions.