TCS recognized as technology innovator
Gov. Bev Perdue recognized Thomasville City Schools for being one of the state's leaders when it comes to using technology in the classroom.
TCS was one of five school systems to be named a North Carolina Innovator in Digital Learning by the Governor's Office. Criteria was based on a scoring system in the areas of curriculum and instruction, professional development, leadership, administration and instructional support, infrastructure and technical support, and student learning outcomes.
"This is a big deal to be recognized by the governor," said Superintendent Keith Tobin. "What that says it we've worked our tails off over the last number of years to incorporate our digital learning and technology with our instruction. We've created 21st Century classrooms and it's really made a difference in what we're trying to get done."
TCS received more than $1 million from an Impact Grant five years ago and set three goals: increase student achievement, reduce teacher turnover rate and improve the graduation rate. TCS met all three goals through initiatives such as providing laptops to all students at Thomasville High School, putting interactive whiteboards in every classroom and focusing on professional development.
"Technology is seen in our district as a valuable game-changing solution to the difficult task of teaching our students, many of whom come from families that struggle putting food on the table," TCS Technology Director Mike Ingram said. "It's nice to be recognized. It lets people know that we put the money we got to good use."
Moving forward, Ingram said TCS recently completed a major upgrade of its technology infrastructure and is in the process of providing all teachers with Ipads for them to use in a 3D reading program. Beginning in January, Ingram said the technology department will begin an evaluation process on what to do next year when it's time to replace student laptops at THS.
"In the last number of years we've put an emphasis on being to incorporate technology into our classroom,' said Tobin. "We want to prepare students for what they'll face in their future, particularly in this 21st Century society we live in. We've been able to integrate technology into instruction on a daily basis. I'm pleased with what we've been able to do."
As part of its recognition, TCS was invited to a reception at the Governor's mansion on Dec. 5, as well as luncheon at the state school board association. Perdue is expected to visit the school system in December.
Staff Writer Eliot Duke can be reached at 888-3578, or firstname.lastname@example.org.