Verizon partners with KCPS for innovative learning opportunities

Published: Mar. 15, 2023 at 11:43 AM CDT
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) - Nearly 1,500 students from three KCPS schools will receive a free iPad and internet connectivity technology through Verizon to be used in and out of the classroom.

Central High, Central Middle, and Paseo Academy of Fine and Performing Arts will be getting the free technology Wednesday with help from the Verizon Innovative Learning program, which enters the city for the first time this year.

Students and teachers are granted free tech, internet access, and an immersive STEM curriculum. They’ll receive financial and professional learning support from a full-time coach, focusing on helping teachers design and deliver hands-on learning experiences. Additional funding is available for school IT support ensuring students anytime, anywhere have access to learning.

Schools involved with this program across the country have to qualify for consideration. They have to serve students in middle or high school grades and have no less than 65% free and reduced lunch rate – or participate in the community eligibility provision.

The value of this program on average for each school according to Verizon is $2.3 million.

How could this help students’ education in and out of the classroom moving forward? Statewide, the ACT average composite score is 20.30, but KCPS statistics show an average score of 16.10.

Here are some stats from Verizon about this program:

  • 89% of teachers said it helps explore new ways of teaching
  • 85% said it allows more individualized instruction.
  • 82% of teachers said it’s enhancing their ability to differentiate instruction.
  • 88% of coaches said their experience positively impacts the guidance they provided teachers.
  • 78% of teachers said the program enhanced student engagement.
  • 71% of teachers said it helps them reach goals they set for their teaching.

Devices are assigned to the school, not the student though so 8th graders going to high school will leave the tech behind to incoming sixth graders. Schools will have to re-up the program after two years.