Waterville School’s kindergarten and pre-kindergarten students will soon be issued their own tablet computers courtesy of a grant from Sabey Data Centers.

According to a press release issued Feb. 2, Sabey has given $15,000 to the school for the purchase of Chrome tablet computers for the two youngest grades in the school.

Elementary School principal Tayn Kendrick said Feb. 12 the tablets will be more accessible than the Chromebooks that are currently checked out to each Waterville School student.

Kendrick said the pre-kindergarten and kindergarten students use computers as a supplement to classroom learning guided by the teacher. However, for these young children lack of coordination with a mouse can be a barrier to using the Chromebooks.

The kids are already accustomed to using their fingers to direct a screen because they usually have experience using their parents’ cell phones or other hand-held devices.

Kendrick said examples of programs the students use in the classroom are Lexia Learning’s reading program, which gives the kids practice manipulating letters and words at their reading level, and Learning Ally, a program that provides access to audio books.

“It makes it a little bit easier for them to get on and to navigate different apps to be able to help their learning,” Kendrick predicted of the tablets.

Sabey owns and operates Intergate.Columbia, a data center campus in East Wenatchee.

The press release cited Ryan Beebout, Sabey’s Central Washington General Manager, as saying that the donation reflects one of Sabey’s core values: a commitment to lifelong learning.

He said, “We are strong supporters of education and its importance to the well-being of the community. We will always seek to build relationships with people who place a high value on education.”