67 / 54
      58 / 54
      65 / 47

      McAllen ISD launches 'iTunes University' courses

      McAllen Independent School District is setting the bar as it brings education to a global audience.

      It TMs one of the first school districts in the country, and the only in Texas to make content available on itunes University, putting the district at the forefront of electronic instruction technology.

      Want to learn conversational Spanish? There's a course for that.

      McAllen ISD is one of the first public school districts to use the itunes University interface as an easy way to design and distribute educational courses.

      Until now, itunes University has only been used to access college level courses; now local courses are available for free.

      The community is the global community sometimes, not just the McAllen community," McAllen ISD Superintendent Dr. James Ponce said.

      The courses aren TMt just for students but their parents as well.

      "We are looking forward to the day that parents say they are using that lesson at home," Ponce said.

      Director of Advanced Academics Karen Nitsch says the program will help students to become more engaged in learning.

      "They [students] should be much more independent in finding solutions and answers," Nitsch said.

      By providing mobile devices for every student in the district, Director for Instructional Technology Carmen Garcia says students can learn anywhere, anytime.

      "They can create videos, we want to encourage the creativity, the innovation," Garcia said.

      "Our ultimate goal is college and career readiness at a higher level, Ponce said.

      The district has already distributed 7,000 iPads.

      By next year all 25,000 students from K-12 will have a mobile device of their own.

      All teachers in the district will be trained over the summer on how to implement the new technology.