For the second year, schools across Idaho will have the opportunity to submit their ideas for what the next-generation classroom looks like and put them into action. It’s all part of the Idaho Technology Pilot Program, which received a second year of funding from the Idaho Legislature.
Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna announced today that Idaho’s public schools can begin submitting their ideas for funding today. Applications are due Wednesday, June 11, 2014.
“The demand for advanced technology in the classroom has become organic and only continues to grow. Everywhere I go, every school I visit, students, teachers, and parents are demanding more technology to help keep students engaged in the classroom and to increase academic achievement,” Superintendent Luna said. “I encourage Idaho’s schools to apply for the Technology Pilot Program to help the state identify the most effective classroom technologies that can be fully integrated at any grade level and scalable and sustainable in schools across Idaho.”
Superintendent Luna added, “While I celebrate the continued funding for the Technology Pilot Program this year, I hope that we all recognize our efforts to expand technology in Idaho’s public schools cannot end with pilots. Our efforts will never be enough if we end up with a situation where a parent has to hope that their child is lucky enough to attend a school that was fortunate enough to receive a grant. We must find a solution where every child has access to advanced technology in the classroom, no matter where they live or go to school.”
The Idaho Legislature appropriated $3 million in funding for the Idaho Technology Pilot Program in K-12 public schools this year. The goal is for schools to pilot ways that the effective use of technology in elementary and secondary schools can help improve student achievement. Eleven schools were awarded Technology Pilot Project grants last year, and these schools have two years to utilize the funding.
To be eligible this year, a pilot project must use innovative technologies designed to improve student academic growth and financial efficiencies throughout an entire school. The project must be scalable to other schools in Idaho and sustainable statewide after the technology pilot period ends. The grant funding for the pilot projects will be for one fiscal year. Local school districts can plan to implement the pilot projects over a one-year or two-year period.
Each application must include a research component that shows how the school will evaluate student achievement and other measures. At the end of the technology pilot period, the state will evaluate the pilot projects and identify best practices for how the state can improve education for every child by providing the necessary instructional technology in every classroom in the state.
Only one application per school is permitted. The state will accept multiple applications from a district. The eleven schools awarded last year are not eligible to apply again.
Grant proposals must be submitted via e-mail to the Idaho State Department of Education before midnight (MST) on June 11, 2014. Awardees will be announced the first week in July, when funding becomes available.
If you are interested in applying, please visit our website to download the grant application or to register for an upcoming informational webinar.
To learn about the current Technology Pilot Project grants, check out our blog posts on Sugar Salem High School and Beutler Middle School or read the Idaho Education News series about all the grants.