We have a reputation for being on the cutting education of technology and education in West Vancouver and we are again today with the launch of our new program to support homework completion. We know that it can be hard to remember to bring homework home, and heavy textbooks can also hurt the back health of our students – today we are eliminating these problems.
I am pleased to announce that we are first school district in North America to be using the DHDS (Drone Homework Delivery System) in our schools. We have purchased four drones for each classroom that will be used to deliver homework directly from classroom to homes. This is a major investment, but one we think will lead to a huge increase in student achievement.
I know this bold decision will raise eyebrows, but since Amazon made the announcement to look toward drone delivery of its parcels, we have been working with many of the same people to see how we could take this technology and apply it to schools. We are excited to have been selected as the location that will pilot this new technology that will dramatically change the home – school relationship. Working with partners in Sweden – the Lirpa Sloof Yad Foundation we will be tracking this work and sharing our story with others.
So, just how does it work?
We do not yet have one-to-one drones available. We currently have four drones for every classroom. At the end of the day students line-up their textbooks and workbooks. The drones will then make multiple deliveries. In most cases the books will be delivered to the front door of the house, but we also have the technology that if a window can be left open in the house, the homework can be dropped off directly on the student’s desk at home. The process happens in reverse each morning, as drones return to the homes and pick-up the homework and deliver it to school. With four drones per classroom we will have approximately 2000 drones in the air at any given time. They are part of an interconnected network and will fly at high speeds in a low air space to not interfere with commercial flights.
Why are we doing this?
There are many reasons why we are doing this. In recent years, there have been multiple studies questioning the validity of homework. We think homework needs to become cool again. And we know whenever you add technology to something that makes it feel modern and hip. So delivering homework by drone will make homework the new thing to do.
A major health concern is neck and back pain caused by heavy backpacks. DHDS solves this problem. No longer will students have to lug heavy backpacks of textbooks to and from school – they will now be there waiting for them when they arrive.
We also know that being a student is hard – there is a lot to remember. No longer will students have to make excuses for forgotten homework. And if a student says, “My drone didn’t deliver my homework” we can send the drone to make an immediate pick-up and have the materials brought to class.
We know homework is just the start. There are many other ways our drones can help make school-life more convenient for students. Next fall in at least one of our schools, we will pilot the drone lunch delivery program. Once all homework is delivered, the drones can be used to deliver student lunches. So, instead of parents having to come to the school and drop off the forgotten sandwich or deliver local takeout for their child, drones can be programmed to do this.
We take pride on being the learning leaders not just locally but nationally and internationally. And with our announcement of the DHDS today we maintain our position at the top.
This is the latest in what has become an annual tradition at this time of year to launch innovative initiatives.
In 2012 I launched my FLOG.
In 2013 I made the announcement of Quadrennial Round Schooling.
In 2014 we formalized our System of Student Power Rankings.
In 2015 we created our Rock, Paper, Scissors Academy.
And today we launch the DHDS – destined to revolutionize the student homework experience.
Hopefully you are enjoying today as much as me!