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Teachers embrace technology in classroom

Boxford Topsfield Middleton —

Boxford Elementary School Trust (BEST) announced this week that $45,657 was gifted to Boxford Elementary Schools for teacher-requested educational learning tools and training in the Fall grant cycle.

BEST received 14 grant applications from Boxford teachers – 12 of which were for 1:1 iPad technology – and they were able to fund four grants.

Funds raised from BEST’s Oktoberfest Fundraiser were used to fund two grants: six iPads to be used in small workgroups in Kim Suther’s Grade 1 classroom, and Professional Development for Boxford’s Special Education team to gain greater knowledge on how to recognize and manage deficits in a student’s executive functioning ability.

The majority of grant applications were for full classroom 1:1 iPad technology. A portion of the Harriet Ernst Endowment was used to fund two full classroom grants: the complete installation of 1:1 iPad technology in the Art Rooms at both Harry Lee Cole and Spofford Pond Elementary Schools.

With an overwhelming amount of grant requests this Fall, the BEST board carefully considered the merits of all grants prior to finalizing its approval on the four recipients. With limited funds available, the board heavily weighed the breadth and scope of each grant, specifically looking at how many students have the opportunity to benefit from the grant, grade level distribution of new technology, and whether the grant had the possibility for multi-use applications.

The board began with the Art Rooms at both schools due to the broad reach among the student population and the fact that when Art is not in session, the iPads can be utilized by other teachers. While not every grant could be funded during this grant cycle, the message is clear – Boxford elementary teachers have embraced the use of iPad technology in the classroom.

Fundraising goal is $100,000

“With 10 unfunded grants for 1:1 iPad technology, the effort is even greater to reach out to the community and ask for their assistance in achieving our fundraising goal of $100,000 for the Enhanced Learning Initiative,” said Hagan Rivers, co-president of BEST. “We have prioritized the remaining requests and will fund them on a rolling basis as we receive the funds needed, beginning with a full classroom grant to Mrs. Puglisi in Grade 2 and working to fund requests from Grade 6, Grade 4 and Grade 3 after that. Right now we are holding a raffle: for every $10 donated between now and December 15, you have a chance to win an iPad Air, yourself. We hope that residents will take advantage of the raffle and help us get closer to our goal before Winter break begins.”

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Technology in the classroom