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Floral celebrates purchase of classroom whiteboards.

SHREWSBURY -- On Jan. 15, the Floral Street School PTO voted to purchase 17 interactive whiteboards, enabling the school to meet its goal of employing interactive technology across 100 percent of the core classrooms.

According to Principal Lisa McCubrey, "The PTO's purchase of 17 interactive whiteboards means that every student at Floral Street School, all 790 of them, will have universal access to the interactive and engaging learning experiences made possible through use of this technology.

"Teachers will be able to design lessons where the whole class can have access to digital content and opportunities to interact with content and concepts in ways not previously possible.''

The PTO has been working for many years to be able to maintain annual funding of educational programs and resources (such as enrichment programs and field trips, classroom print and digital resources, and playground repairs and replacements) while also saving for a capital investment that would have the largest scope of impact on teaching and learning conditions possible and align with school and district improvement goals and strategic priorities. An opportunity to make such an investment presented itself this year given Floral Street School's urgency to move toward the goal of employing use of interactive technology across 100 percent of core elementary classrooms -- an opportunity that allows for all students to have access to content with one click or tap as well as interactive learning experiences not possible without the technology.

With 16 whiteboards already installed and in use in Floral core classrooms, many teachers and students already experience the powerful impact this technology has on teaching and learning. Floral was slightly less than halfway toward the goal of equipping all 33 core classrooms. With the PTO's purchase of 17 whiteboards, Floral Street School will reach its goal of 100 percent installation.

Shrewsbury Superintendent of Schools Joseph Sawyer met the news with deep gratitude, stating that "Challenging financial times have made the implementation of the school district's technology goals difficult.

"I am very thankful for the generosity of the Floral Street School PTO for financing the installation of 17 interactive whiteboards, which will move us much closer to meeting our goal of every elementary school student having access to interactive technology tools in each core classroom.''

The installation of the boards is tentatively scheduled to take place during February vacation. Professional development for all teachers who will be receiving the whiteboards is being planned.

"We are so very grateful to the PTO executive board -- President Hannah Kane, Vice President Kim Lipka, Treasurer Michelle Biscotti and Secretary Jennifer Basgaard -- and to the committee chairs and active members who work to organize and coordinate essential fundraising and community-building events at Floral Street School,'' Ms. McCubrey said.
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Title Annotation:Weeklies
Publication:Telegram & Gazette (Worcester, MA)
Date:Jan 31, 2014
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