Thousands of students and staff in Liberty Hill ISD will have more advanced devices next school year after the board of trustees approved $3.2 million in funding at a March 18 meeting.

What you need to know

The district will spend about $3.4 million to purchase new laptops, upgrade iPads and Chromebooks, and install technology at new campuses. On March 18, the board of trustees approved several technology purchases above $50,000, totaling $3.2 million. The remaining $200,000 in purchases did not require board approval.

Over $1 million will go towards replacing laptops for the incoming freshman classes at Legacy Ranch and Liberty Hill high schools, said Scott Stansbury, LHISD executive director of technology. These devices have reached the end of their 5-year life cycle along with around 1,000 Chromebooks and 400 iPads.

The new laptops are more expensive as they have more processing power and memory than the previous ones, which were not suitable for daily use, he said. The district will update Chromebooks and iPads to a newer version to better support online applications being used in classrooms, Stansbury said.

The cost

The $3.4 million in new technology will be funded through the following funding sources:
  • $2.76 million from 2021 bond funds for technology
  • $291,461 from bond funds for Legacy Ranch High School
  • $212,282 from bond funds for Tierra Rosa Elementary
  • $97,997 from bond funds for Liberty Hill Middle School
  • $86,481 from the 2023-24 fiscal year budget
  • $12,800 from the 2024-25 fiscal year budget

What they’re saying

Many students have opted to use their own laptops or home computers due to issues with school laptops—an option some students don’t have, school board president Megan Parsons said.

“We want our kids to have a quality product that allows them to compete and do what they need to do in school every day,” Parsons said.

Superintendent Steven Snell said the state of the district’s technology has drastically improved since three years ago when technological problems caused low morale among teachers and staff.

What else?

The district will purchase new technology such as laptops, Chromebooks, iPads and televisions for Tierra Rosa Elementary and Legacy Ranch High School, which opens in August. Liberty Hill Middle School will also receive new technology as the school undergoes renovation work.

Moving forward, the district will look to improve its cybersecurity by launching multi-factor authentication services, Stansbury said.