C.F. Richards has been awarded a $5,000 Versafund technology grant from Versacare of Riverside, California. Versacare has been awarding to traditional grants to Adventist schools since 1990 and began awarding technology grants in 2016. Fifty-four applications for the grant were submitted and C.F. Richards was among the thirty-six schools awarded through a computerized random selection process.
School Principal, Mrs. Hackley found out about the grant from the Potomac Conference Vice President for Education, Mr. Keith Hallam, at a Principal’s meeting last school year. Due to our reaccreditation in February 2017, the school had already been developing a technology plan; this plan was used to provide information for the Versafund grant application in December.
Below is a summary of the application:
Over the past two years C.F. Richards Christian School has been updating its technology by installing a wireless network, acquiring computers from a university and outfitting the three homerooms with document cameras and interactive whiteboard systems. Since then the school staff and school board have been researching and developing a long range technology plan with a goal of facilitating the learning of all students in a 21st century learning environment.
Through the research conducted, it is clear that teacher professional development is an essential part of a successful technology plan. The teachers will learn to effectively use and facilitate student use of technology as a tool for problem solving and critical thinking. As education consultant Michael Fullen stated, “The more powerful technology becomes, the more indispensable good teachers are.”
The use of technology is an integral part of C.F. Richards Christian School’s learning environment. Many of our pieces of technology are in need of updating or replacing in order to ensure we are providing our students with the best instruction possible. Our school recently held a fundraiser raising money for technology improvements and was awarded a grant from the Potomac Conference Office of Education. Being awarded the Versafund grant for $5,000 will help us to work towards our goals listed below.
PLANS OVER THE NEXT 3 YEARS:
1. Professional development for teachers – suggested course Microsoft, Teaching with Technology Course. ExSeed Conference, Loma Linda for one teacher (Cost is travel and $100 registration fee) Cost approximately $3,000.
2. Laptop or tablets for homeroom teachers. Cost approximately $2,000.
3. Mobile laptop/tablet lab for the classrooms – 20 mobile devices either laptops or 2-1 tablets and charging cart. The approximate cost is $400 per laptop and $400 for the charging cart. Total cost approximately $8,400.
4. Makerspace – creation of a hands-on lab which may include STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, mathematics) based creative activities, a 3-D printer, robotics, that encourages student driven learning based upon their interests. Cost approximately $3,000.
5. Connected School – equipping a room with the technology necessary for distance learning for grades 9 and 10. 6. Wireless internet capability enhanced to extend to music room and distance learning room.