CPE on Chrome OS for Schools
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CPE on Chrome OS for Schools

by dmortensen on Mon Aug 10, 2020 2:58 pm

I'm writing in hopes that Adafruit's amazing team of creators, or someone in the community, will know of a solution, or would be willing to collaborate on a solution to this problem. Please help if you can.

My school has been progressively building up a healthy STEAM infrastructure over the past 5 years. While COVID is wreaking havoc on our hands-on approach to programming, we are confident that we can make this happen for our students through send-home kits. Over the past five years we have purchased HUNDREDS of Arduino Uno R3, Adafruit Gemma/Flora/CPE, and just this past week purchased 150 additional Circuit Playground Express. We are committed.

Now that we have had to go full 1:1 with Chromebooks, we find ourselves in a predicament. We have hundreds of Circuit Playground Express boards, but we are unable to use them in the Arduino Web Editor with the Create App. We purchased a subscription to the Chrome App for schools, and when we go to the boards area of the Web Editor, it says that we need to upgrade our plan to gain access to the CPE at $7 per month (for every student?!)

We really want to keep our staff and students in the Arduino IDE, however there is no way we will ever be able to justify this cost. Our school is hemorrhaging already. Our students are about to go at least 60% online, and probably 100% in the near future. Our students and teachers are struggling. Now, in order for us to use the awesome tool (CPE) for teaching kids, we will have to abandon the awesome platform (Arduino IDE) and completely switch to Python and using the Caret app just to make the devices usable. This is a huge change and one that is completely unnecessary.

We are aware of the MakeCode option as well, but again, it would require switching from Arduino (C++) to Javascript, and that is something we just don't want to do right now as we are doing a good job of progressively building skills in C++.

Please help. We really need a good solution to this problem.

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Joined: Mon Aug 10, 2020 2:44 pm

Please be positive and constructive with your questions and comments.