Ohio’s public schools aren’t allowed to charge students for the use of textbooks, but they can charge “reasonable fees” for student technology and instructional materials.
But what happens when the pace of technology outstrips the law, as it often does, and gadgets begin to replace textbooks?
Two state lawmakers argue that schools that dole out student technology as part of the curriculum and then charge a fee for those devices are crossing a line.
“This scenario is tantamount to declaring that if you cannot purchase your own textbook, you cannot participate alongside the other students,” the two representatives wrote to one northeastern Ohio school district.
In a one-to-one program, a school or district distributes one personal gadget for each student. Schools loan out devices such as Chromebooks and iPads, which become essential for classwork during the day and homework at night. A student would have a hard time opting out.