Silicon Valley school bucks high-tech trend
In classrooms across the country, teachers are turning to laptops and even iPads. So you might think the schools in Silicon Valley would be leading that evolution. But one school there has actually banned computers.
The school is the Waldorf School of the Peninsula -- in the heart of high tech country.
Deborah Newlen, an English teacher at Waldorf, said of tech in the classroom, ""A computer is a good tool, it's a fun toy, it can even be a tutor, but it's not a teacher."
The parents of Waldorf students are some of the most plugged-in.
Kempton Izuno has worked in Silicon Valley for about 25 years. "Just as you wouldn't let a child use a power tool until they were trained on a power tool, there's a time and place for technology," he said.
His wife, Genese Izuno, said, "There's plenty of time for them to learn technology. Plenty of time. I don't think it has a place in the classroom."
At Waldorf, CBS News correspondent Priya David Clemens reports, everything is hands-on, instead of online.
Student Ondine Izuno said she has time with technology -- just at home. "It's just not in the classroom, and I like that," she said.
Waldorf is bucking a national trend of schools going digital, such as Wilbur Wright Middle School in Munster, Ind.
Maureen Stafford, director of instructional programs and assessment at the Munster School District, said officials there feel like pioneers.
Every student at the school has a laptop. And every library desk has a computer.
Stafford said the plugged-in approach helps keep students up-to-date on constantly changing subjects, such as science.
"In those textbooks, they're still reading about the fact that Pluto is a planet," Stafford said. "You look in a science textbook. Pluto is still a planet. "
So it's ironic that while Middle America speeds up, some in Silicon Valley are taking it slow.
Waldorf student Zack Wurtz recalled a recent trip to the Google campus. "It was funny ,because they're so high-tech, and we were learning about them and at the same time," he said, "we weren't using any of their stuff."
When asked if he'd prefer to read a book or an e-reader, Wurtz said, "Pick up a book. The feeling of paper. Being able to underline, write, 'I like this, I don't like this.' You can't do that with your, Kindle thing."
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