Today, what was once a small pilot program in a few Harlingen schools is a district-wide success story. Students are more engaged and attentive than ever, thanks to the speaker systems built directly into the ceiling of every elementary classroom.
After realizing the district needed a better way to connect with bilingual and early literacy students, director of technology James Pearcy launched the pilot program in 2010. He installed test units of a portable speaker from Lightspeed Technologies in just eight classrooms.
“To really understand their teachers, our students need to be able to hear the correct pronunciations and all the nuances of the English language,” said Pearcy. “I knew there were a lot of kids who were missing out on that.”
Teachers wore a small microphone around their necks, and their voices were projected throughout the room via a portable speaker. The test program was an immediate hit for both the teachers and students.
“Teachers were telling us that classroom management was easier, and their students were more engaged,” said Pearcy. “The kids on the fringe of the classrooms weren’t falling off and trying to ﬁnd something else to occupy their time – they were ﬁnally able to hear and understand better.”
In fact, the pilot program was so successful that the district installed the built-in speaker systems in elementary classrooms today. Still, Pearcy said he wouldn’t be satisﬁed until all 18,500 students in the district have access to the technology.
“This technology has brought our kids into an arena of conﬁdence – they know they’re not going to be left behind just because they have trouble hearing or understanding their teachers,” said Pearcy. “For me, that makes the investment well worth it.”
About Lightspeed Technologies
Established in 1990, Lightspeed Technologies is the trusted provider in classroom audio solutions. Our passion is to improve the listening and learning environment for every child. We believe strengthening the connection between teachers and students is at the heart of learning.
Lightspeed classroom audio systems allow teachers to speak in normal conversational tones while being assured every child has an equal opportunity to hear all of the instruction. From the traditional installed systems with ceiling speakers to the new Redcat all-in-one, no install system, Lightspeed is proud to offer the very finest in classroom audio technology. For more information about Lightspeed classroom audio products, visit Lightspeed’s website.