Friday, January 16, 2015

Internet Access "Grant-ed": HHS and MPMS Students Check Out Mifis and Chromebooks for Learning from Awarded TEA's TLP Grant

With a computer and an internet connection, there is little a student can't research for a project or paper.  Online learning doesn't stop at the school house door, as long as you have that laptop and the Internet.

Huntsville High's Katy is good to go for her Journalism projects.
But what about those students that don't have one or the other? Or neither?

Michael and Halli-Sue both appreciate the opportunity to check out a Mi-Fi at Mance Park.
At Huntsville High School and Mance Park Middle School, students can (with permission from their teacher) go to their corresponding libraries and check out a mifi and a Chromebook if needed to complete assignments. (At this time, Mance Park Middle School is offering mifis only.)

The teacher fills out a survey, hits submit and...

...then the campus librarian can view all the pertinent information.
(This form is made on the Google Application called Forms, which is available to all teachers)

This is thanks to a program that's now entering its third year, and it's made possible by the work of Amy Mayer, HISD's Director of Staff Development and District Initiatives.

Amy Mayer, our district's "Money-Getter"
(Not her official title! She's the Director of Staff
Development and District Initiatives...and a money getter!)

She wrote and submitted a Technology Lending Program grant that's offered by the Texas Education Agency.  Over the last three years, our district has been awarded over $200,000 (that's two hundred thousand dollars- $100,000 in 2012 and $100,000 in 2014)  that has allowed us to make these and other purchases related for the lending of technology.

Mance Park Teacher Mrs. Lisa Hoke feels better knowing that students
have access to a Mifi if they need it to complete her assignments.

That means that kids are getting access to the Internet.

Katy and HHS Librarian Mrs. Carol Nichols humor the photographer as Katy picks up a Chromebook.

By the way, for those who may be unfamiliar with the terms, a Chromebook is a small inexpensive laptop that runs the Chrome browser and software, and a mifi is a portable wireless device which allows a user to access the Internet.

Meanwhile at Mance Park, Halli-Sue and Mance Park Librarian Ms. Jean Qualtrough
also act natural for another pose!  Thank you all!

But wait, there's more!

Stay tuned to the blog for an upcoming post regarding our plans for the other TLP grant we have been awarded.  We are diversifying the way that we serve our students as they gain access to the Internet, and we'll tell you about that soon.


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