I am pleased to say that our department has been approved to purchase a set of laptops! That's the good news; now for the hard yards.
My biggest problem is what to get!
I really enjoy my own tablet, but use it mostly for reading, browsing, or quick social media responses. The onscreen keyboard is a drawback for me (in a pinch I use a USB one), but the biggest drawback for the secondary English classroom, I think, is that you are limited to doing one thing at one time. This drives me crazy when I'm cooking. I like to follow a recipe and listen to youtube at the same time, so I break out the multi-task Chromebook. Plus, I don't think they'd wear well in an all-boys high school.
I'd love to get a set of chromebooks, not the least of which because I could afford two sets of them. At $249/ea you can't go wrong. However, my own students spend computer time creating - using audio/visual tools to create and edit video and sound that they can use and/or embed as presentations and case studies. I'm not sure the Chromebook will allow us that ability - what do you all think? Anyone with some experience here who could chime in with an opinion? Are there online audio/video tools that are of good quality?
I think this is probably where the money will be spent. We can get decent 8-gig Toshiba laptops for a reasonable (for NZ) $600, excluding our multi-purchase/school discount. Laptops have the advantage of multi-tasking with tools on the HDD. The drawback, of course, is the price. When you can buy two Chromebooks for less than one laptop, well...
I'd like to hear what you have to say, so please leave a comment about what you're doing and how it's working for you.