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Laptop program connects kids with technology

Laptops at Home

Technology is now reaching outside the classroom.

That is the goal for the "Laptops at Home" program in the Round Rock Independent School District.

In the year since it began, the district has now put laptops into some 1,200 homes.

For many of them, it's technology they never thought they'd be able to have.

When Araceli Campos isn't at school helping other students, she's at home helping her own two daughters.

Now, thanks to the Laptops at Home program, that help includes a computer.

"We used to go to the library. It's better now because if the weather is good or bad they can make their homework or they can make things on the computer. Sometimes on holidays the library is closed," Campos said.

The program provides reimaged laptops to families from free and reduced lunch schools that don't already have a computer at home.

It's all free.

"The learning happens not just in the classroom but into the home," said Corey Ryan with RRISD.

It's possible through a voter approved bond in 2014 which included money for new technology.

It paved the way for 12,000 dollars to re-image the older models.

"Actually having a laptop to be able to do some of the robust research and content creation when it comes to developing projects, videos to showcase learning has been really important so the laptops have been tremendously important to our families," Ryan said.

With the laptops comes education.

Each parent is trained on whom to use them.

Campos says she also has some rules of her own.

"The first rule is computer is for homework," Campos said.

Campos says this small tool has changed her kids' lives, and hers, in a big way.

"It's a very good tool to have," Campos said. "When my kids are not at home, I use it!"

So far the program is in 11 schools.

It'll add four to six by the end of this year.

The only thing families have to do is provide their own internet access.

The computers are theirs to keep forever.

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