Jefferson City Public Classrooms Get Smart

7 years 10 months 48 minutes ago Wednesday, August 25 2010 Aug 25, 2010 Wednesday, August 25, 2010 10:45:46 AM CDT August 25, 2010 in News
A smartboard is an interactive tool students of all ages can use with different content for different courses.

These advanced teaching tools cost almost $3,000 for the smartboard, projector and installation, and with over 100 smartboards in classrooms district wide where does all the money come from?

Jefferson City School Community Relations Director, David Luther, says, "PTA fundraisers, E-mints technology grants, and budget money from the district help fund these fairly expensive learning tools." Even though over the last four years the price of smartboards has come down, smartboards are still upwards of $1,400 a piece.

East Elementary School applied for the E-mints technology grant two times before being approved. The school received a $400,000 grant in the 2009-2010 school year and it won't expire for two more years.

However, not every school can be approved for this grant. The school must meet certain population and socio-economic requirements.

Luther says not every school's technology goal in the district revolves around smartboards.

"Many secondary schools need computers, digital cameras, flip cameras, as well as smartboards."

Fourth grade teacher, Amanda Schmitz has used a smartboard in her classroom for the last four years. She enjoys the motivation and hands on activities her student get from the use of the smartboard.

"It engages kids more," Schmitz says. "There's more participation, kids want to explore new things, and its' a time saver."

But whether or not every classroom has a smartboard, Luther says "It's only one tool though, and we don't want anyone to think we're completely reliant on that. Still, it's the quality of the teacher in the classroom, that's the main thing...that's what makes them successful."

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