Brentwood’s One-to-One Laptop Policy Has Perks, but Damages Come at a Price

Farah Alzafarani and Zohia Tahir

The addition of a one-to-one laptop policy has encouraged teachers to adopt new tools in their classrooms and has helped students access and complete digital projects with ease. However, it has also brought the stress of damages or lost parts, and the financial cost of repairs. 

Supplying students with laptops that can be used at school means teachers can create more interactive lessons using new educational software. Microsoft Teams serves as a digital “home base” for classes and a simple way for students to communicate with teachers virtually at any time.  Teachers have also assigned work through applications like Castle Learning,, and I-Ready to help students practice the skills and concepts they need to master in the classroom. 

“The computers have relatively great Wi-Fi in school for the amount of people using it,” said Josue Flores, a sophomore. “It comes with Microsoft 365, PowerPoint, and Excel, which all help with my performance in school.” 

 Some research-based classes require students to use the internet daily, so having computers assessable at any time allows students to perform the online reading necessary to locate important data and other findings. 

“It is important that students have access to the wreath of information at their fingertips,” said Dr. Grella, one of the research teachers. She is “an advocate for the digital classroom in the 21st century.” 

Despite these clear positives, some teachers worry that the constant access to laptops can cause students to become reliant on technology. 

 “There can be some disadvantages,” said Angelo Giannakos, a teacher. “The issue is that students don’t learn how to accomplish things themselves; instead, they rely on the computing power of the computer.”  

The fact that computers can be prone to accidents and require repair costs is another point of contention 

“Parents fill out a loan which they are financially accountable for it and if you damage your laptop you will have to pay $25-$150,” said Candice Cheng, Coordinator Information Technologies.  

Although it may look expensive, the average cost for repairs or replacements at Brentwood is lower than the cost of repairs at other schools.  

“Another significant problem with students using laptops for school is that if they run into problems, they will have to wait in extremely long lines, which will waste a lot of their time,” said Diamond Harris. 

Brentwood High School may soon offer insurance for students who are having financial difficulties. If implemented, the insurance would cost the student $39 per year. Purchasing the insurance would be voluntary.

If a student accidentally damages the laptop, the insurance should cover the cost for repair. The school would still send a note home to parents about the damages, however.