PATRICK BERKERY | PhillyBlurbs.com

If you think Catholic schools are so rooted in tradition that they’d be the last to get on board with the move from textbooks to iPads and laptops in the classroom, think again.

Several Catholic high schools in the Pittsburgh area are already making the move.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that schools like Vincentian Academy in McCandless and Canevin Catholic High School in Oakwood already have students using iPads and laptops. Vincentian has been testing the in-school use of 35 iPads and 35 laptops since October. At Canevin, the school’s 87 freshmen were given iPads to use throughout the school day and at home. Twenty-three students from feeder Catholic schools who are taking accelerated math and science at Canevin are also using iPads.

Vincentian plans to order some new print texts for fall. Ultimately, they plan to stop using print textbooks within five years.

As for the costs involved, Vincentian president John Fedko estimates the school’s technology plan will cost $150,000 to $250,000. He tells the Post-Gazette that the school is currently seeking grants, both to finish installing a wireless network and to purchase devices.

Canevin principal Kenneth Sinagra said the school’s initial iPad effort cost about $70,000, including some money from a federal technology grant, state textbook money and an anonymous gift.

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