TCS earns $160K grant

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Troy City Schools is taking a leap into the “21st Century,” so to speak.

Thanks to a $160,000 Technology Grant, at least six classrooms in Troy City Schools will get a technological makeover.

The school system was awarded the grant officially last Friday, after competing for more than a month with school systems across the state, said Troy City Schools Superintendent Linda Felton-Smith. It was awarded by the Alabama Department of Education through federal stimulus money.

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Five math classrooms at Charles Henderson High School and one at Charles Henderson Middle School will be completely upgraded with technology to lead them to the “21st Century” classrooms.

“There will be a wall-mounted projector, electronic white boards, slates, a classroom audio system, a network printer, student response systems for each classroom, a document camera, a laptop for the teachers and between six classrooms, they will share three carts of 30 netbooks,” said Troy City Schools District Technology Coordinator Wayne Hubbart.

Hubbart said the movement to more upgraded technology will begin with these six math classrooms, but it won’t stop there.

“It’s proven that technology improves student engagement in the classroom. With technology you can increase the rigor of your equipment in the classroom,” Hubbart said.

The reason the school system chose math to start with is because of scores on the ACT and High School Graduation Exams.

“The reason we’re starting with math is scores are not where we’d like to see them,” Hubbart said.

Felton-Smith said the grant will be a big asset to the local schools.

“It means we are going to be able to have classrooms that have all of the technology equipment recommended for classrooms in order to vary instruction and engage in students,” Felton-Smith said. “We’re going to be able to really provide our students with state of the art technology opportunities.”

Hubbart said he hopes this will just be the beginning of many more upgrades in the future.

“This is the beginning for Troy City to start fully developing a classroom with all this equipment in it,” Hubbart said. “We have some equipment in some but none with everything in it.” By January, Hubbart said he hopes the upgrades will begin.

Along with the upgraded technology, Felton-Smith said teachers will receive professional development on how to use the equipment in the classroom.

“Our teachers will go through training in how to use it, then look at the difference it will make in the instructional process and improvement of our math instruction and also math scores overtime,” Felton-Smith said.