Submitted by Microsoft
Microsoft Corp. today announced that 48 middle- and high school teachers nationwide will receive more than $1.3 million in software licenses as part of the Microsoft® Curriculum Grant Program, an initiative designed to help educators create leading-edge information technology curricula and courses that will help prepare students for college and the technology-driven work force.
"For teachers, the IT worker shortage is adding additional demands to an already demanding job," said Janie Schwark, manager of academic programs for the Developer Group at Microsoft. "The technology skills students are expected to have upon graduation are ever-changing. As a result, educators must keep their own skills up to date while finding ways to keep software, equipment and other resources current.
"Microsoft is committed to working with educators to provide the programs, resources and products they need to empower students to build the technical skills and knowledge base they will need to pursue careers as computer engineers, programmers and analysts."
Microsoft launched the Curriculum Grant Program in 1998 to reward faculty members at middle schools, high schools and vocational and technical schools for innovative uses of technology in computer science, programming, Web development and information systems curricula. The two-year competitive grants, which award from $10,380 to $41,575 in software licenses per school, include the latest technology tools used in the workplace, such as the Visual BasicÃ’ , Visual C++Ã’ and Visual J++Ã’ development systems, Office 2000 Developer Edition and the Visual InterDevÃ’ Web development system, as well as the WindowsÃ’ 98 or Windows 2000 Workstation operating systems, if needed.
For many teachers, earning Curriculum Grant Program awards creates the opportunity to begin offering students advanced computer science, programming and Web development courses that otherwise might not have been possible. A lack of funding needed to obtain state-of-the-art software and difficulty in finding curriculum resources and materials often stand in the way of teachers’ efforts to develop technology education programs in their schools.
Tanya Baxter, a business and computer education teacher in West Chester, Pa., says her Curriculum Grant Program 2000 award will help East High School meet the expectations of local business and industry leaders, who are calling for graduates with solid backgrounds in current IT tools. West Chester’s community leaders have banded together to form a business advisory board with the high school, which is mapping out a plan to help address the area’s growing demands for IT workers at all levels. The solution developed by educators and business leaders calls for the high school to step up classroom technology and for the industry to reciprocate with internships and school-to-work programs.
With the Curriculum Grant Program award, all computers in the East High School computer lab will have Microsoft software installed, so all students in the lab will have a PC available, rather than having to share the 15 now available at any given time, Baxter said. Students will be able to graduate with training in Microsoft Visual Basic, Visual J++ and eventually Visual InterDev, and develop the skills needed to write code, create applications for the Windows environment and design Web pages, she said.
"Our business community expects us to graduate students with the technology skills and competencies needed to perform in this new technologically advanced economy," Baxter said. "Employers are telling us today that we need to step up our efforts and prepare students with the basics needed to pursue jobs as computer programmers, engineers and Web designers. Our Microsoft Curriculum Grant award will help make the advanced courses needed possible."
As part of the award, faculty members agree to post current curricula and course materials on the MainFunction Web site (http://www.mainfunction.com/), so other educators can share the resources. The MainFunction Web site features a quarterly newsletter and online resources for high school computer science, programming, information technology and Web development teachers. The MainFunction newsletter focuses on information technology trends and issues, while the Web site has been expanded to include a curriculum database, downloadable projects, bulletin board forums, quarterly chat sessions and more.
Through programs such as the Curriculum Grant Program, Microsoft’s Developer Group is committed to providing practical solutions to the complex challenges that computer science engineering and information systems departments in junior high and secondary schools, colleges and universities face in implementing and integrating technology.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technology for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software -- any time, any place and on any device.
Microsoft, Visual Basic, Visual C++, Visual J++, Visual InterDev and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.
The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.
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Microsoft Curriculum Grant Program 2000 Recipients
Keith Price, Alabama School of Fine Arts, Birmingham, Ala.
Joy Axmith, Meadowridge School, Maple Ridge, B.C.
Lara Wear, Mount Douglas Senior Secondary, Victoria, B.C.
John Murphy, Palm Springs High School, Palm Springs, Calif.
Tom Allison, Chaparral High School, Temecula, Calif.
Terry Toy, Woodland High School, Woodland, Calif.
Naomi Salaman, Boulder High School, Boulder, Colo.
Joy Porter, Glenwood Springs Middle School, Glenwood Springs, Colo.
Betsy Cutting, East Granby High School, East Granby, Conn.
Sharon Lambert, Dunnellon High School, Dunnellon, Fla.
Kathryn Effley, Saint Stephen’s Episcopal School, Bradenton, Fla.
Faye King, Mosley High School, Lynn Haven, Fla.
Brian Scarbeau, Lake Highland Preparatory School, Orlando, Fla.
Lisa J. Stamper, Columbia Middle School, Grovetown, Ga.
Dennis Carpenter, Riverside Military Academy, Gainesville, Ga.
John Owens, Savannah Country Day School, Savannah, Ga.
Laura Lau, John Hope College Preparatory High School, Chicago, Ill.
Jane Bernhardt, North High School, Evansville, Ind.
Brian Guerrini, Cardinal Ritter High School, Indianapolis, Ind.
Kathy Cox, South Tama County High School, Tama, Iowa
Ted Orth, Garden Plain High School, Garden Plain, Kan.
James Flatley, Archbishop Shaw High School, Marrero, La.
Elizabeth Hatzenbuehler, Ursuline Academy, New Orleans, La.
Sharon Lambert, Skowhegan Area High School, Skowhegan, Maine
T.M. Bullock, Tantasqua Regional High School, Fiskdale, Mass.
Paul OBrien, Mount Everett Regional, Sheffield, Mass.
Emil Masi, High School of Science and Technology, Springfield, Mass.
Betty Gibson, Berrien County Intermediate School District, Berrien Springs, Mich.
Chris Owen, Kearsley High School, Flint, Mich.
James Szalay, Warren Mott High School, Warren, Mich.
Linda Brown, Chadron High School, Chadron, Neb.
Amber Watkins, West Wendover Junior/Senior High School, West Wendover, Nev.
Eileen Skarecki, Governor Livingston High School, Berkeley Heights, N.J.
George Hotz, Immaculate Heart Academy, Washington Township, N.J.
Kimberly Perkins, Wayland-Cohocton, Wayland, N.Y.
Dexter Lindsey, Lutheran High School East, Cleveland Heights, Ohio
Christine Keller, Ft. Recovery Local School District, Ft. Recovery, Ohio
Christine Mahaney, Locust Grove High School, Locust Grove, Okla.
Kathy Roberson, McNary High School, Keizer, Ore.
Eli Shaheen, Plum Senior High School, Pittsburgh, Pa.
Tanya Baxter, East High School, West Chester, Pa.
Steven Warr, Magnolia High School, Magnolia, Texas
Nyla Simonetti, Eatonville High School, Eatonville, Wash.
Doug Reppe, Quincy High School, Quincy, Wash.
Kathy Plamondon, Woodland Middle School, Woodland, Wash.
Anne Meadows, Academy of Careers and Technology, Beckley, W.Va.
Natalie Zimmerman, Keyser High School, Keyser, W.Va..
Jeff Reindl, Lomira High School, Lomira, Wis.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
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