North Adams - 3/6/2008
For Immediate Release
Contact: Ron Miles
March 6, 2008
1000 Paces Helps Put Drury High On Tech's Cutting Edge
District Selects Local Company To Create High School Laptop Initiative
When North Adams Public Schools needed help expanding its wireless learning initiative to Drury High School it looked no further than its own backyard. Clarksburg-based 1000 Paces had just the solution, delivering a complete system of web-based applications and cutting edge hardware at an affordable price. The Drury High program will feature the innovative new Asus Eee PC laptops and be driven by 1000 Paces' unique Class Drive Learning Management System.
"1000 Paces is excited to be part of North Adams Public Schools' commitment to innovative teaching and learning techniques," said Ron Miles, president of 1000 Paces. "Technology has so much to offer our schools but sometimes cost can keep them from taking advantage of it. The new Asus Eee PC Laptops coupled with our Class Drive system is the perfect, affordable solution to putting computers in the students' hands and using technology to change education."
North Adams is no stranger to wireless learning. Conte Middle School is currently in the third year of a popular laptop program funded by a state grant. When district leaders looked at expanding it to the high school level, cost was a major obstacle. Although staff, students and parents all supported learning with laptops at the high school level, the lack of state funding created a major impediment to moving forward.
"Cost is always a factor when dealing with technology in schools," said Matt Mervis, technology director for North Adams Schools. "Laptops and software can be expensive. But with the popularity of the middle school program, and with those students now entering high school, we were determined to find a way to make it happen."
One of the recent technological shifts that helped make the expansion possible is the recent introduction of ultra portable, lightweight laptops. These designs were inspired by a global effort called One Laptop Per Child (OLPC), an attempt to provide low cost computer technology to some of the world's poorest locations. Mervis began examining how these low cost machines might be used in schools and turned to 1000 Paces, the district's longtime application service partner, for help creating a solution. 1000 Paces designed an integrated package featuring the revolutionary Asus Eee PC, Google Apps for Education and 1000 Paces' own Class Drive Learning Management System to support communication, collaboration and anywhere/anytime access for students and staff.
"It is tremendously fulfilling to watch technology improve education. North Adams really is on the forefront of this movement," Miles said. "It is even more gratifying to watch it happen right here in our own communities."
1000 Paces is also working with North Adams Public Schools to provide customized laptop configurations, network support, technology-curriculum integration, and professional development. These key steps will ensure that anywhere/anytime access at Drury High School will continue to propel student achievement goals forward while transforming both teaching and learning.
For more information about 1000 Paces, LLC, contact Ron Miles at 413-329-4277. For more about the Drury High School Laptop Learning effort, contact Matt Mervis at 413-441-1752.