Columbia Public Schools Foundation awards four grants

Thursday, September 19, 2013 | 1:22 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — The Columbia Public Schools Foundation awarded four grants totaling about $61,000 for this school year Wednesday.

The ceremony took place at the Hickman High School Media Center. The four recipients were:

Empowering iHistory

The social studies departments at Hickman and Rock Bridge high schools will use the money to equip both schools with a traveling iPad lab. The grant covers the cost of 35 iPad Minis, along with software and covers for the iPads.

Amount: $24,254.30

Common Core State Standards (CCSS) @ Your Media Center and Beyond

This grant will help establish a electronic book collection at the four high schools in Columbia.

Amount: $12,000

Anytime CPR

This will create kits so that online health students can practice CPR skills at home.

Amount: $1,435.30

Gateway to Technology

Gateway to Technology is a new STEM — science, technology, engineering and mathematics — program for Columbia’s middle schools. Its purpose is to provide students with opportunities to access state-of-the-art technologies.

Amount: $23,650.00

Jill Cox, president of the Columbia Public Schools Foundation, said the grants benefit students because they provide new ways of learning.

Cox noted that three of the four grants focus on technology in schools.

"I have a student at Hickman, and I know that they are doing to a lot more technology based-type learning," Cox said. "They’re giving iPads to kids instead of books and downloading their books. Kids are so savvy with technology so it seems logical to try and keep advancing that for them."

Douglass High will be one of the four high schools to get funding for the electronic book collection. Jessica Spinder-Menold, media specialist at Douglass, said students like logging into iPads to read books.

"(Electronic books) are great because they can highlight and ask questions and take  notes right there in that device," Menold said. "(The notes) are always there when they log in so you don’t have to worry about losing your notes. It’s a visual experience that’s a little different than reading a book and they really seem to enjoy it."

The Columbia Public Schools Foundation is a not-for-profit organization.

Supervising editor is Elizabeth Brixey.

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