Wake Schools Going Digital

May 5, 2017

Textbook warehouse.
Credit Flickr

Public schools in Wake County will move away from traditional textbooks in favor of online learning materials.

The school board voted unanimously to phase in virtual education resources over the next three years. These open educational resources, or simply OER, allow teachers to access curriculum and students to read material online. 

"Standards are changing in every state in this country every year," said Brian Kingsley, Wake County assistant superintendent of academics. "And so an advantage of OER compared to traditional textbooks is they're able to change with those updates without having any financial impact on school systems."

The district will start with language arts classes in third and sixth grade, and Math-1 courses. 

"Traditional publishers are going to continue to deal with issues of how do you accommodate small-big, moderate and large districts with the changing standards that are out there when you have a really expensive textbook in front of them that districts are putting millions upon millions of dollars in?" said Kingsley.

The district will keep printing materials for students without Internet access at home.