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11 Knox Co. schools chosen for technology program

7:17 PM, Apr 5, 2013   |    comments
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Knox County Schools Superintendent Dr. Jim McIntyre announces the winners of the School Technology Challenge at Bonny Kate Elementary School.

A new program could bring millions of dollars worth of technology to some Knox County schools.

But it is unknown if the program will receive the funding it needs.

On Friday, Knox County Schools Superintendent Dr. Jim McIntyre announced the winners of the School Technology Challenge.

28 schools applied and 11 were chosen including the following: Bearden and South-Doyle high schools; Holston, West Valley, and Vine middle schools; and Halls, Corryton, Mooreland Heights, Norwood, Sterchi, and Bonny Kate elementary schools.

Those selected are part of a one-to-one technology effort.

Superintendent McIntyre made the announcement at Bonny Kate Elementary School.

"It just touched my heart. They were so excited... It's just a wonderful opportunity. I think they're just going to blossom from it," said Linda Norris, principal at Bonny Kate.

At the high school and middle school levels, there would be one-to-one technology devices for each student.

It is unknown if that would be a laptop, iPad, or other device.

"At elementary, upper elementary level, it's probably still one-to-one and in the lower grades, it's more blended learning which is utilizing technology in the classroom. It's not necessarily a device the students will take home," Superintendent McIntyre said.

The pilot program will not happen if funding does not go through.

The school board will vote on the budget on April 9; Knox County Commission will vote on June 6.

Superintendent McIntyre requested $7.5 million to fund instructional technology.

$3.3 million would support the pilot initiative.

"A lot of folks ask me what about the folks who applied who didn't get it. 'Aren't they going to be mad?' And my response is, 'Yeah, I hope they really kind of yell and scream about it. I hope they make a big fuss about it,'" Superintendent McIntyre said.

If the funding is approved, the pilot program would start this fall.

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