Duval County Superintendent says eBooks coming to Duval County classrooms

Nikolai Vitti says change could come as soon as this fall

Published On: Jan 26 2013 04:32:14 PM EST   Updated On: Jan 26 2013 04:49:54 PM EST
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

Duval County school students could soon be studying from an eBook or tablet rather than a text book.

According to Superintendent Nikolai Vitti, that change could come to some schools as soon as this fall -- all part of an effort to make Duval County students as competitive as possible when they graduate.

“And I'm optimistic that we will begin to transition from textbooks to digital content, meaning instead of using the old bulky textbooks we can put the same content, and even more interesting and engaging content on notebooks,” said Vitti.

Channel 4's Kumasi Aaron spoke with parents who would welcome the change.

Morrie Senn said her son’s computer and tablet are an integral part of his learning experience.

He does enjoy using electronic devices more than writing and stuff like that, but he does enjoy reading too on the tablet,” said Senn.

The mother was excited when she found out that Vitti is planning to make tablets a part of every students learning experience.

“I think that would really be more interesting. More hands on, I guess. I think it would be a good idea,” said Senn.

Vitti said students now are digital natives, and the district has to catch up.  He believes the move will give Duval students a competitive edge.

“Students can find the information more interactive, take it home with them and interact more with their peers, interact more with their teachers," Vitti said.

Vitti said the district is currently going through the strategic plan with the School board and working hand-in-hand with next year's budget.

The superintendent admits buying tablets or e-reader devices will be costly, but said the move will save the district millions of dollars in the long run.

Still, Vitti said paper books will still have a place in the classroom.

"I will always believe in a book. There's nothing like an old fashioned book, and I don't want to walk away from not using books,” said Vitti.