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July 11, 2014

District purchases new books for students

GREENVILLE — A recent purchase by the Greenville Independent School District will ensure students enrolled will be holding brand new textbooks each year for the next eight years.

Approximately $594,000 was approved by the Greenville ISD School Board for the purchase of math textbooks from kindergarten to eight grade in English, and from kindergarten through fifth grade for bilingual students. Science textbooks were also purchased with the money approved for grades kindergarten through high school, and kindergarten through fifth grade for bilingual students.

Rachael Driggers, district textbook coordinator for Greenville ISD, said by purchasing from a single publisher, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Greenville ISD were able to receive a 20 percent discount on the books purchased.

Although the deal resulted in significant savings, Driggers added the company also has a reputation for quality textbooks, making it the right choice cost-wise and best for the students.

“We decided what would best meet the needs of the students,” she said. “We didn’t let cost drive what we think will do best. We wanted to purchase wisely.”

The district opted for the eight-year adoption plan provided by the company.

The new textbooks the district will receive are “consumable” textbooks, which means students can mark, write and highlight in them since they can keep them after the school year ends. Each new year, the publisher will send the district the same amount of new books over the course of the eight-year plan.

Although extra books would have to be purchased if the district continues to grow, Driggers said it is a great deal for the district.

“We will receive the following years textbooks at no cost,” she said. “The only way they spend money is an increase in enrollment.”

Since every high school student receives an iPad, Driggers said a feature the publisher has will work well with the tech-savvy students.

The publisher has an app where the entire textbook can be downloaded onto the students’ iPads.

Since the students will have that app, the district only purchased classroom sets of books for the high school students to save on cost.

“Every student who has that app can pull it up on their iPad and has the book on them at all times,” she said.

The new books will be available for the fall 2014 semester.

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