Marlboro College

NewsPress Release: 3/1/02Eisenhower Foundation Awards Grant to Marlboro Tech Center

MARLBORO, VT - The Eisenhower Foundation recently awarded a professional development grant to the Marlboro College Technology Center to create and provide a comprehensive, performance-based assessment and professional development program that will enhance connections between assessment, teaching, and student learning.

With the grant, the Technology Center will reach as many as 120 southern Vermont elementary and middle school teachers and paraprofessionals, along with their classes, by instructing them to use educational software for grade-appropriate math and science exercises during three two-hour learning sessions.

Each session will be tailored to integrate with that class's curriculum, and will be supplemented by additional activities using the same software and technology-focused skills in the classroom. By learning along with their students, the teachers will be comfortable integrating the technology into their own classrooms and helping their peers introduce similar age-appropriate activities into other classrooms.

In addition to Marlboro, partners in this collaborative teacher training program include: Windham Southeast Supervisory Union, Windham Southwest Supervisory Union, Windham Central Supervisory Union, Windham Northeast Supervisory Union, Southeastern Vermont Community Learning Consortium (SVCLC), Compass School, Hilltop Montessori, Neighborhood Schoolhouse, Kindle Farm, Kurn Hattin School, and St. Michael's School.

According to Mary Greene, director of community and special programs at the Tech Center, "The benefits of this program are threefold. We expect to be able to help prepare teachers to use technology-focused learning activities to meet Vermont learning standards for math and science, to empower teachers to become peer leaders who can help other teachers integrate technology into their classrooms, and to serve the learning needs of teachers and students by tailoring learning activities to each school­s curriculum and action plans."

Greene is a co-director of the Eisenhower program, along with Paul Smith, who is the curriculum coordinator for the Windham Southeast Supervisory Union.

The program design is based on a technology integration training model that the Tech Center successfully piloted with one local school, Guilford Central School. It is a proven example of job-embedded professional development that provides opportunities for teachers to learn new skills in the context of their regular classroom work.

The lead trainer for the program will be John Donaldson, who taught for many years in an elementary classroom. He currently serves as director of advanced technology classes at the Tech Center, serves as an adjunct faculty member at Keene State College, and manages K2Kid:Hypermedia, a young children's Internet development company.

The Tech Center will hire additional program trainers and coordinate the class visits, while technology coordinators from participating supervisory unions and private schools will provide technical assistance from within the schools themselves.

Launched in Brattlboro in October 2000, the Marlboro College Technology Center brings together education and entrepreneurship, while offering technology resources to the community. It houses The Persons School of Marlboro College, which provides four year-long master's degree programs in Systems Integration Management, Internet Strategy Management, Teaching with Internet Technologies, and Internet Engineering.

For more information, call (802) 451-7500 or visit the Tech Center online at http://persons.marlboro.edu.

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