Modernizing the Wolves’ Den

VNHS is receiving Chromebooks and Promethean Boards in 2019.


The Promethean Board on display in Room 112.

By Mhar Tenorio and Ani Tutunjyan


As the semester comes to an end, many students are wondering when they will get Chromebooks, which still haven’t been delivered despite the announcement last year that each student would be receiving one.

Principal Yolanda Gardea admitted that it’s still uncertain when the computers will be coming in.

“I was told October. LAUSD is slow. Anything they do purchasing-wise is slow,” Ms. Gardea said. “Just keep in mind there are 650,000 in this school district. It’s just so big, and it takes them forever to process things.”

Due to the delay, the Instructional Leader Team (ILT) of VNHS decided that Chromebook carts will be in most classrooms with the exception of dance and computer classrooms, rather than each student receiving one.

“The reason we got pushed back and went from a priority four school to a priority three school is because we used some of that per pupil funding to buy 11 carts in the beginning of the year so now we 29 of our own. There are some schools that have one or none so we put ourselves behind a little.”

Charging Chromebooks
Chromebooks are charged before students can use them.

The incoming Chromebook carts will be added to the 29 carts that the school already has in classrooms.

If students do not own a computer at home, they can still acquire a chromebook through a parent consent form. However, a majority of the students at Van Nuys High already own a computer.

“About two-thirds of the students here have computers at home,” Ms. Gardea said. “The kids who have something at home would leave them here so we wouldn’t have to worry about forgetting it or it’s not charged or all of the things happen, and they will always be available for the kids to use.”

Despite the change of plans, Mrs. Gardea assures that the promise of a one-to-one ratio between student and chromebooks will be kept.  

Van Nuys High School was one of the first large high schools selected to receive chromebooks through the district’s Empowered Learning initiative.


Students are now able to tour the Louvre and explore the inner layers of the heart while being seated by their desks.

The Promethean Boards arrived at Van Nuys High before winter break with some classrooms having received them over Thanksgiving break.

These boards can display equations, maps, diagrams, websites, videos and pictures with a 4K resolution display, which completely outclasses the quality of the school’s current projectors.

The new boards also operate like a regular whiteboard; teachers and students can write on it, allowing up to ten people to do so simultaneously.

They will also complement the integration of chromebooks in the classrooms. The teacher can connect the board with the student’s chromebooks so that they can see the same display from a closer view, creating an interactive and engaging environment.

“My goal is for kids not to sit in their seats and listen to the teachers talk and write on the projectors,” Mrs. Gardea said. “It’s for the kids to go up and ‘here come try this,’ and to be able to interact with the board.”

Along with a lifetime of ten years and warranties included, the boards are also unbreakable, meaning that there will not be a major issue with students harming it.

“They know it’s meant to be in a classroom. If a kid is carrying a chair and hits the board, it’s not gonna break it.”

It also has an operating software that can be updated throughout its usage.

“This is Smartboards on steroids,” Mrs. Gardea said.


VNHS received a sizable fund from LAUSD of $2.69 million in total for per pupil spending.

“There’s a certain number of schools that were per pupil funded in the district and it has to do with having more of an ability of having more money to spend not just in categorical funds which are Title I or federal and state funded. I merely asked and we were funded.”

These funds are used to acquire the Chromebook carts and Promethean Boards in VNHS classrooms.

The total number of boards will cost $450,000, and each Chromebook will cost about $200. The additional chromebook carts and chargers will cost about $12,000 each.

Aside from the new technology, these funds are also used for other department materials, including new and updated textbooks.

“It’s one of those ‘one in a lifetime’ thing to get the school technology up to the 21st century,” Mrs. Gardea concluded.