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Ripley Central School receives tech funding

January 25, 2017
Westfield Republican

Ripley Central School will receive $20,620 for classroom technology after its Smart Schools Investment plan was approved by the state.

"The Smart Schools Bond act has played a critical role in expanding educational opportunity by helping schools modernize outdated classrooms," said Gov. Andrew Cuomo. "This funding ensures that all of New York's students -no matter their zip codehave access to the technology that has become so essential to modern education by preparing them to meet the demands of the 21st century economy."

With the Smart Schools Act, school districts are investing in technology such as computer servers, interactive whiteboards, tablets, desktop and laptop computers, and high-speed broadband and wireless connectivity. This technology helps students to learn at their own pace, expands access to advanced courses and interactive curriculum, and enhances communication between parents and teachers. Smart schools funds will also facilitate necessary investments in pre-kindergarten classrooms, removal of classroom trailers and high-tech school security.

The 65 plans approved by the Smart Schools Review Board and will fund several new projects, including $27.1 million for classroom technology purchases, $10.4 million for school connectivity projects, $3.5 million for high-tech security projects and $2.9 million to construct pre-kindergarten classrooms. This includes the approval of four Special Education Smart Schools Investment plans, supporting $160,000 in classroom technology, $13,000 in high-tech security and $3,000 in school connectivity. In 2014, Cuomo called for New York state to invest $2 billion in its schools through a Smart Schools Bond Act an initiative that would finance educational technology and infrastructure, providing students access to the latest technology and connectivity needed to succeed and compete in the 21st century economy. New Yorker's agreed and voted in the Smart Schools Bond Act that November.

Following the proposal of the bond act, Cuomo established the Smart Schools Commission to gather information on strategies for how schools can most effectively invest the bond funds. This advisory commission produced a final report recommending a focus on expanding robust broadband and wireless connectivity and utilizing transformative technologies. The 65 plans approved by the Smart Schools Review Board reflect many of the best practices identified by the commission.



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