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Local district finds LCD top choice

Buying criteria at District 88

There are so many technology tools available for today’s classrooms that finding the right combination can be a big assignment. In Dupage County High School District 88, that job falls to Elaine Peterson, Director of Technology. Willowbrook students with Panasonic LCD projectorWhen the district decided to replace 28 old projectors at Willowbrook and Addison Trail High Schools, Peterson discovered the choices were many and varied. So she took the problem to Kevin Cavanaugh at United Visual, who helped her sort things out.

"Whenever we’re in the market for something Kevin brings out several choices and demonstrates them," says Peterson. She had a number of criteria for the new projectors. She wanted something very sharp, and something bright enough to use in a classroom without turning out the lights. The new projectors would have to work well with the district’s computers and they’d have to be easy to use and durable, since many different people would be operating them.

 

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After looking over all the possibilities, Peterson chose a Panasonic portable. The Panasonic had a brighter picture than others she considered and worked well even with the lights on. Cost, of course, played a major role in such a large purchase. "This just seemed to be a better class of projector for a little less money," says Peterson. "It was definitely cost effective."

Peterson says the two schools use their new projectors in conjunction with the computers, TVs, VCRs, laserdisc players and (in science) microscope cameras they already had. Every department now has its own projector, and teachers rotate them from classroom to classroom on a/v carts.

"The old LCD images were so bad," says district librarian Kathy Jugle. "They were fuzzy and dim." Now when Jugle brings in large freshman groups to learn about the library’s computer resources, no one struggles to see. She also says the Panasonics have proven themselves easy to set up and operate. In addition to librarians and classroom teachers, community and parent groups also use the projectors for meetings.

But no matter how many hands are at the controls on a given day, the district is doing well with its choice. Peterson and United Visual were able to bring District 88’s needs into sharp focus.