Chromebooks could be opened to more creative purposes in the future

Isaiah Castillo, Staff Writer

“Get out your Chrome books for the test we will be taking” is something students have heard throughout the school year.

Taking notes and tests seem to be two of the most common uses for the district issued laptops so far after being distributed to Akins students in August.

It’s left some wondering if that is all students can do with these laptops.

The Chrome books capable of running apps off the Google Play (The Chromebook’s place for downloadable apps); however, for some reason students aren’t allowed to use the Play Store even hiding it from the Chromebook’s dashboard.

While in theory a district employee could easily activate this feature by a “flick of a switch,” the reality is more complicated than that, Sarah Dille a Technology Coach states that from another colleague of hers,

So I think it’s something that’s basically in the works that they’re thinking about. And the more teachers ask for specific things. And students ask for specific things I think the more they’ll look into [it].”

— Sarah Dille

“…Students are able to add extension web apps and Chrome apps to their Chromebooks Google Play has not been enabled for Chromebook or domain yet, the feature was put into beta last year…”

Google Play was tested at some point, which means it’s not something that they have forgotten about. However, some students are left wondering what is taking so long to enable it and why can’t they just do it now?

Dille said there are federal laws that govern what app students can have control over and it has to do with student data privacy.

“So we would have to look at each app’s terms of service and see whether or not that terms of service agrees with the federal laws,” she said.

What this means for us the students is we can’t go around on Google Play downloading whatever apps we see fit, although this was expected as it seems they will have “carry a list of apps available. “

So you can expect to see apps like “Adobe Draw” or “Adobe Spark” available in the coming years.

Dille isn’t too sure when they will have this feature enabled.