Moursund, D.G. (2002). Obtaining resources for technology in education: A how-to guide for writing proposals, forming partnerships, and raising funds. Copyright (c) David Moursund, 2002.
Since its beginnings, Apple Corporation has taken a significant interest in education. Over the years, it has funded a number of educational projects and made major donations to education.
One of Apple's programs is called Partners in Education. During 1995-96, Apple solicited proposals from "teams" that consisted of a precollege school and a college of education. The goal was to establish partnerships that included Apple, a school, and a college of education.
Winners in this grant competition receive a substantial amount of training and a substantial amount of hardware/software. A team of five participants from each site participated in an extensive summer training program. The teams consisted of two school teachers, a school administrator, and two college of education faculty.
The actual awards were adjusted to the needs and interests of individual sites, so varied in what was included. However, a rough estimate is that a grant provided approximately $150,000 of resources, spread out over a two year period.
There were approximately 500 applications for the 10 grants. The ratio of 50 applicants per grant awarded certainly places this into the "highly competitive" category.
The proposal given on the next few pages was one of the 10 winners. Like the proposals in the preceding appendices, this proposal is not a perfect model. As you review it, identify its strengths and weaknesses and consider how it might be improved.
Part 1-Partnership&emdash;Profile of K-12 School
Kennedy Middle School has an academically diverse student body of 556 students in grades 6-8. With 25 teachers, the school is a county center for students with low cognitive functioning, multiple handicaps, and special needs. Kennedy has ESL and migrant student programs. It is also a transition site for students from nearby Lane School for seriously emotionally disturbed students. All special students, including Talented and Gifted students and 10 autistic students, are mainstreamed into regular classes. Socioeconomic backgrounds of students range widely, from wealthy to economically disadvantaged living in government subsidized housing. Twenty-two percent receive free or reduced price lunch. Ethnic makeup is reflective of Eugene's ethnic makeup: 5.5% Hispanic; 5.31% Asian; 2.2% Native American; 1.83% Black.
Four years ago four new school goals were embraced by the whole staff: integration of subject matter, teaming of teachers, longer more flexible blocks of time for in-depth projects, and more choices for students. Two years ago the staff made a commitment to integrate all special education students into the regular class-rooms. Service learning and real world experiences are high priorities. There is a strong commitment to site-based decision making. In 1995 the staff identified technology integration as the highest priority for staff development.
Four interdisciplinary teams meet weekly to plan integrated curriculum. For example, a language arts unit on oral presentation culminates in student presentations in science classes. The flexible schedule is often adjusted to allow project-based learning, frequently away from school. All 7th grade students, including those with special needs, participate in interdisciplinary Science, Technology and Society projects in which students focus on a science-related local social issue (such as the impact of old growth logging) and complete research, interviews, data analysis, and recommendations. The entire staff has participated in staff development focused on cooperative learning, thinking skills, and integrating special needs students. Onsite staff technology classes meet weekly. A technology committee, including students and staff, guides planning for technology use.
Each teacher has a classroom computer, including 22 Mac LCIIIs, one Mac 5200, and four Mac 5300s. In addition, a computer lab has 19 LCIIIs, four Mac Classic IIs, one Mac 5300, and one Macintosh 5200 with touch screen. Three Mac LCIIIs and one Mac 5300 are in a mini-lab, and the media center has two Mac LCIIIs, one Mac LC 575 and one Mac 520. The school also has a Laser printer, a scanner, a dedicated file server, a CD ROM tower and two camcorders. The labs and peripherals are used by all teachers across the entire curriculum. The school ratio of students to computers is about 9.5 students per computer.
Part 1 Partnership&emdash;Teacher Training Institution Profile
The University of Oregon is a major teaching and research university and the largest higher education institution in the state. Forty to 50% of undergraduate students are Oregon residents, the remainder coming from many countries and states, primarily California. Applicants to the College of Education's newly designed Educational Studies major, which leads to a combined teacher licensure in elementary and special education, fit the following profile: 2/3 are traditional students (young, full-time); 1/3 are nontraditional students (older, with children, part-time, employed). The majority are female.
All UO College of Education licensure programs are accredited by the state licensing body, the Teacher Standards and Practices Commission (TSPC). The college's special education teacher preparation programs are also accredited by the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC). The mission of the College of Education is to "make educational and social systems work for all," which means that the college strives to create and support effective systems that are responsive to the full and diverse range of educational, health, and social needs of all individuals. Critical to accomplishing the college's mission is (a) preparing teachers to meet the diverse needs of all students, (b) exploring and incorporating new types of relationships with schools into teacher preservice pro-grams, and (c) providing prospective teachers with skills for the future.
College of Education teaching staff learn through collaborative working relationships, participation in professional organizations and conferences, and extensive reading of scholarly and practitioner-oriented journals. Both the university and the college provide numerous technology workshops in which faculty are able to learn new applications and skills. Some of these are sponsored by a university network called the Faculty Computer Network, which also publishes a weekly electronic newsletter to keep faculty abreast of new developments. Faculty knowledgeable about technology applications have participated in the planning for all courses in the Educational Studies major, helping to ensure meaningful technology integration. As part of the Educational Studies major, all students take a 3-credit technology course and use a mixed platform computer lab.
College faculty are now directly participating in over 120 projects in K-12 schools for the purposes of re-search, outreach and professional development, with many involving the use of technology. The college's Center for Advanced Technology in Education (CATE) now collaborates with local schools in five federal research projects, 2 state-funded professional development projects, and many outreach efforts. Many of these focus on special needs students. For example, in one current project, CATE researchers teach computer-based study strategies to students with learning disabilities.
Part 1-Goals and Benefits of Partnership&emdash;Both Partners
Alliance with the UO teacher preparation program and CATE professional development staff will bring technology instruction and technical assistance to Kennedy teachers, thereby enhancing their skills in using educational technology to promote learning for students of all abilities and interests. Specifically, Kennedy teachers will have free access to a 3-credit UO course: Technology-Based Strategies for Thematic Learning. The course will be designed specifically for this project and co-taught by personnel from the UO's Center for Advanced Technology in Education (CATE) and technology experts from Kennedy. The curriculum will be flexible to center on the technology skills and strategies that will be most supportive of the field-based learning in the Tale of Two Rivers project that is the focus of our proposal. Taking the course at the same time will be an equal number of UO preservice teachers, all of whom will bring a basic expertise in the use of technology (see attached list of competencies) and a high interest in field-based learning. UO students will be paired with Kennedy teachers and serve as co-teachers throughout the project. Where appropriate, they will provide technical assistance to teachers and students, supporting their use of new technology and conducting technology-based activities for which teachers may not have time or expertise (e.g., collating electronic data from multiple field reports, assisting students to scan pictures for multimedia presentations). Collaboration will also provide opportunities for Kennedy teachers to shape the professional development of prospective teachers.
UO preservice teachers will gain valuable experience working with highly skilled mentor teachers on real world interdisciplinary projects taught to diverse ability students. They will work with teachers to explore ways in which technology can facilitate this process. The project will also give teacher trainees an opportunity to use and share their technology skills for instructional purposes (in school and on the field site). Specifically, they will have the opportunity to support teacher and student use of computer-based tools for information acquisition, manipulation and presentation, as well as collaborate on multimedia materials development focused on real-world needs. The resulting link between theory and practice will definitely be more concrete.
A Partners in Education 3 grant will allow Kennedy Middle School to infuse technology into all phases of the Tale of Two Rivers watershed project explained in Part 2. The professional development activities provided by the grant will be passed down by the project team to the entire Kennedy staff in the form of schoolwide staff development that will enable all teachers to infuse technology into their classes in ways not yet dreamed of. Furthermore, by collaborating with the UO teacher preparation program, project staff can have a significant impact on how teachers are prepared to teach in the 21st century.
Part 2&emdash;Target Population, Strategies, and Use of Technology&emdash;K-12 School
The curriculum focus will be an interdisciplinary project on local watershed ecosystems called Tale of Two Rivers sponsored by the Eugene Water and Electric Board (Eugene's local utility) and supported by 20 local agencies. Watersheds of the McKenzie and Willamette Rivers serve as real-life laboratories for the study of concepts like cycles, energy, and resource management. Many schools will participate, but Kennedy's participation will be unique because of the incorporation of preservice teachers and the infusion of technology into every activity. With the guidance of 10 Kennedy teachers and 10 UO preservice teachers, 6-8th graders will design and implement an in-depth study of a nearby wetland, including developing site improvements and field guides to make the site more accessible to others (see map attached). Middle school students are an ideal target group because they learn best through hands-on, project-based activities. In keeping with Kennedy's practice of integrating all students into regular classrooms, students of all abilities will participate. In order to ensure growth and success of students with diverse physical and mental abilities, students are placed in heterogeneous cooperative learning groups. Classroom teachers are skilled in cooperative learning techniques, and special education teachers collaborate with regular teachers. Technology adaptations will facilitate participation by students with physical or cognitive limitations.
Students will visit the wetland to generate key focus questions that will guide their course of study. Utilizing their prior knowledge and natural curiosity, students will construct their own knowledge, not by focusing on learning others have determined is important, but on learning they have determined is important and fits with what they already know and want to know. Interdisciplinary teams of teachers and experts will facilitate project activities. Students will be examining real issues, which are not divided into separate disciplines. Projects will go beyond the traditional use of language arts, math, social studies, and science skills to enable students to gather, organize, and communicate information and knowledge. The diversity of our students will be reflected in the diversity of their products.
Apple technology will be used in every aspect of the wetlands project. Newtons and Power Books will facilitate data gathering in the field, including species counts and nature mapping. Apple computers already on our district network will use authoring software and CD-ROM drives that support student creation of multimedia presentations, and use Netscape to facilitate research. Technology will be especially useful for special needs students whose physical or learning disabilities make researching, organizing, and communicating information difficult. Students can post findings on the UO CATE Web server. The printers will allow printing of student papers and color presentations by students.
During year one, 10 innovative teachers will pilot the project with their students. In year two, all 25 Kennedy teachers will participate. Students who participate the first year will help new students and will complete more complex projects in year two. Curriculum developed in year one will be expanded in year two.
Part 2. Target Population, Strategies, and Use of Technology&emdash;Teacher Training Institution
Participants will include 10 inservice and 10 preservice teachers. The preservice teachers will be juniors and seniors pursuing the new Educational Studies program who have elected to pursue a fifth year teaching preparation program leading to licensure in elementary or special education as well as a Master's in Education. These students are targeted to give them early field-based experiences, real-world examples of technology integration, and background for future training. By fall 1996, UO participants will have completed (a) six foundation courses in education, (b) a technology basic skills class, and (c) experiential and volunteer activities with children. They will bring newly learned technology competencies to the project (see attached for a detailed list). The Kennedy teachers range widely in subject matter interests and experience, but all have taught at least seven years, are volunteers, and are extremely motivated to participate.
UO teacher preparation students and Kennedy teachers will be paired according to interests. They will cooperatively design K-12 student curriculum for the Tale of Two Rivers Project and curriculum for a joint university-level course in which all 20 preservice and inservice teachers will participate.
The new UO licensure program will emphasize preparing teachers to work effectively with children of all abilities, ethnicities, and language capabilities. Diversity is a central concern beginning with admission and continuing through all course work and program experiences. Educators of varied ethnic backgrounds helped the program's design teams ensure that course work addresses minority and diversity issues. Many courses are taught by instructors with special education backgrounds.
Apple computer technology is used as the platform for instruction in the introductory technology course mentioned above. In the proposed project, UO students will be able to experience the benefits of using portable technology for classroom and off-site use as they work collaboratively with experienced teachers to develop strategies for utilizing technology to promote meaningful learning in field-based projects. In addition, they will acquire experience using Apple peripherals for data collection and field notes, as well as experience in helping middle school students produce multimedia WWW materials to share with the community and other schools.
During the first year, an ongoing evaluation will guide decisions about how to improve and refine the project the second year. In addition to expanding the project to include another cohort of UO students, Kennedy teachers' first year experiences integrating technology into field-based project learning will be incorporated into design of a new 6-credit methods course for all licensure students by Spring 1997.
Part 2&emdash;Target Population, Strategies, and Use of Technology&emdash;Both Partners
Student-centered strategies: Student-centered learning is at the heart of the Tale of Two Rivers. Student teams will examine an assigned watershed site from varied perspectives, working collectively on one chosen aspect of the ecosystem or impact of human intervention. Students will generate focus questions. Throughout, teachers and trainees will use a constructivist approach to learning that allows students to turn information into knowledge. As facilitators, teachers and trainees will ask students four questions: "What do you already know? What do you want to learn? What did you learn? How can you share it?" This process encourages integration of lateral and creative thinking skills and leads students to generate information useful to real-world audiences.
Types of software and applications: Technology use will be organized around three strands of electronic studying: information acquisition, information manipulation and information presentation, which all provide an instructional framework for answering the four questions above. Student-centered software within each strand will come from the existing software pool, Apple donated software, and software donated by collaborating organizations (see CATE letter of support). For example, the district will facilitate information acquisition by providing access to the WWW using Netscape, to enable student study teams to locate useful electronic reference materials. In addition, the existing site license for ClarisWorks will make possible data analysis spreadsheets (information manipulation) and word processing (information presentation). HyperCard and HyperStudio will be used primarily for information presentation. A unique feature of our proposal is collaboration with the UO's research and outreach center on technology in education (CATE). Critical to this project will be Inspiration, an electronic outlining and concept mapping software made available by CATE for such activities as brainstorming (information acquisition), materials synthesis (information manipulation) and knowledge representation (information presentation). (See attached articles for examples.)
Community Involvement: The Tale of Two Rivers watershed project is supported by more than 20 community participants including the Eugene Water and Electric Board (EWEB, Eugene's local utility company), Bureau of Land Management, UO Natural History Museum, Army Corps of Engineers, and OR Department of Fish & Wildlife. Experts from all groups will work with students and teachers in the field; act as mentors; involve students in their own research; provide background information, technical support and sources of referral to teacher trainees; and help disseminate products. EWEB is providing $50,000 in project support.
Indicators of success : Success will be measured by seeking answers to at least 6 evaluation questions regarding (1) students' achievement of objectives, (2) technology's contribution to learning, (3) technology impact on the project, (4) teacher and student acquisition of new skills and strategies and (5) project impact on K-12 curriculum and (6) impact on teacher preparation program. Potential data sources include interviews, student presentations, questionnaires, pre and post tests, on-site videos, assignments, and course offerings.
Future scenarios: Months 1-4:, Ten teachers and 10 teacher trainees will be collaboratively designing and participating in a UO experimental course on Technology in Interdisciplinary Learning. (Visitors will see facilitators and participants exploring student-centered strategies for using technology to enhance field-based, pro-ject-oriented learning within the Tale of Two Rivers.) End of Month 2-Month 6: Participants and student teams will be using the strategies and technology in the field and class to study chosen aspects of Kennedy's watershed site. (Visitors will see students formulating focus questions, doing nature mapping, developing a vision for the site, interacting with community experts, and learning HTML techniques; teachers and teacher trainees acting as guides helping students set parameters.) Month 9: Student projects will be designed, World Wide Web site established. (Visitors will see teachers, trainees, and local experts working 1-to-1 with students in the field, facilitating development of student skills in collecting, organizing and evaluating data, helping students to focus, encouraging students; students dividing up tasks, collecting and organizing data and beginning to design Web Page format, depending on interests.) Month 12: Projects finished and presented. (Visitors will see student teams, supported by teachers and trainees, producing multimedia and traditional reports of results, and dissemi-nating them in several ways, including publications and via the WWW and local TV and radio.)
Part 3&emdash;Organizational Capacity and Administrative Support:
Kennedy Middle School Affiliates
Person Title Role Experience Time
Kay Mehas principal grant coordinator, teacher trainer, participant teacher trainer and coach&emdash;12 yr.; curriculum developer&emdash;10 yr.; interdisciplinary facilitator&emdash;10 yr. 2 hrs.
George Windham science teacher teacher trainer, technology trouble shooter, participant teacher trainer and coach&emdash;4 yr.; technology trouble shooter&emdash;2 yr. "
Cynthia Turley language arts/soc. studies
teacher teacher trainer, participant teacher trainer and coach&emdash;12 yr. (4 with the State Dept. of Education); middle school teacher: 25 yr. "
University of Oregon College of Education Affiliates
Person Title Role Experience Time
Lynne Anderson-Inman Director, Center for Advanced Technology in Education grant co-coordinator, College of Education facilitator for technology course, project evaluation, participant associate professor in education; technology research and outreach director; spec. ed. multimedia materials developer 4 hrs. per week
Mary Gleason Director, COE Preservice Professional Development liaison with licensure program, teacher trainer, participant, project evaluation associate prof. in education, teacher preparation, special education & technology, study skills instruction 4 hrs. per week
Turnover: Although turnover is not expected, changes in personnel will be handled as follows. At Kennedy, key personnel will each appoint and train one teacher participant as an "understudy." At the UO, key personnel will appoint a colleague to take over or share grant responsibilities if needed. For CATE, this will be Dr. John Lawson, associate director of CATE. For the teacher preparation program, this will be Dr. Kathy Madigan, Assistant to the Dean.
Overall staff development needs: All key personnel have extensive background in educational use of technology, curriculum writing, and teacher training. Project staff could benefit from a chance to see real world applications of the latest technology and develop advanced skills in using multimedia for instruction. Participants want hands-on training in cutting edge authoring software and want to explore strategies for integrating peripherals into the instructional process.
Attendees at professional development retreat: The five key personnel described above will attend the professional development retreat. Each will play a critical role in implementing the proposed project and each meets the attendance criteria. All have excellent backgrounds in training preservice and inservice teachers, are skilled in the use of technology, and have a strong commitment to share the training provided with colleagues.
Additional Staff Development: The Tale of Two Rivers project is funded by the Eugene Water and Electric Board [EWEB] to provide teacher release time and training in watershed ecosystems and related issues. Appropriate school district personnel have already planned training in (1) integrated curricula and project-based curricula that allow teachers to differentiate instruction and (2) in construction of World Wide Web pages. In addition, the UO College of Education will offer a course for both preservice and inservice teachers entitled Technology-Based Strategies for Thematic Learning. The Kennedy principal, who is grant coordinator, has approved the use of staff development time for this project.
Benefits for Entire Site: All Kennedy teachers will participate in the watershed studies project by year two. The Apple training received by key project staff and ongoing Apple technical support will be passed down to all Kennedy staff during school staff development days and 1-to-1 interaction. The new hardware will be accessible to all students and, along with teacher training, will facilitate technology integration into the entire curriculum.
This project will have major impact on the preservice teacher preparation program. If successful, this approach to providing prospective teachers with instructional experience will become a regular part of the program. It will also be a model for integrating technology throughout the program's curriculum. Successful experiences integrating technology into field-based project learning will be incorporated into a 6-credit course for all licensure students by Spring 1997, thereby impacting preservice teacher preparation of future students.
Software and Hardware Support: Key project member George Windham will provide onsite software and hardware support as the Kennedy computer support specialist. The school district Computing and Information Services Department provides extensive software and hardware support, including 8 staff members in the areas of hardware and software troubleshooting, network troubleshooting, equipment repair, and using technology in teaching and learning. Software support is available through experts affiliated with UO CATE. Hardware support from Apple-trained service technicians is available through the UO Computing Center. The UO CATE equipment will be maintained using CATE funds and the university's on-site repair facilities. No construction or modification is required at either site.
Telecommunications: All district schools are wired with a fiber optics Ethernet network. Every computer has access to the Internet via Netscape. Kennedy is connected to all other school district computers and to the University of Oregon through its e-mail system, 4J Net. The University and school district are partners in an NTIA project that funded high speed data transmission capability between the two institutions.
Insurance coverage: The Eugene school district has a self-insurance reserve program in which the first $250 of a ruined or stolen computer's value is paid by the school, with the balance paid by the district's insurance reserve fund. The University of Oregon has a self-insurance program in which each department or center is required to pay $500 for each incident of theft or property destruction.
First Year Milestones: 1996-1997
June July Aug. Sept. Oct. Nov. Dec. Jan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May
Meetings of Key Project staff (continuing monthly)
Announcement of receipt of Apple Partners in Education 3 grant in local news media
Attendance by key project staff at Professional Development Retreat
Tale of Two Rivers Staff Development Begins
Key staff members train 10 participating teachers & understudies (ongoing)
UO CATE begins class Technology-Based Strategies for Thematic Learning
Teacher Trainees join project
First visits to wetland site by students/focus questions generation
Students do research via WWW w/ teacher trainees Students analyze data related to focus questions
Quarterly curriculum review & formative project evaluation & first progress report to Apple
Students start substantive synthesis projects
Students present substantive synthesis projects
Apple representative site visit
Local media invited to project fair
Quarterly curriculum review & summative project evaluation
Dissemination of project results (ongoing)
Additional Funding. The Eugene Water and Electric Board is providing the Tale of Two Rivers watershed ecosystems project with $50,000 for staff development, release time, and technical support to teachers. Mind mapping software will be contributed by Inspiration Software. Collaborative notetaking software will be provided by Aspects Software Company. The $3,500 now in Kennedy's computer budget will be available for needed hardware or software. Supplies will be provided by Kennedy's regular school budget. Funds to allow memory upgrades of computers are already in the Kennedy School budget. The school will also contribute staff development days funded by the school district.
Part 4&emdash;Impact and Dissemination
The project will have national impact because it will be a model of:
how to use technology in an interdisciplinary student-centered project that focuses on real life issues utilizing a field site;
how teacher trainees can apply newly learned skills in technology as they support teacher and student use of tools for information acquisition, manipulation and presentation; and
an instructional effort designed to meet diverse needs of all students.
Dissemination with educators and others will occur through:
publications by key personnel in professional and practitioner oriented journals (e.g. the International Society for Technology in Education's Learning and Leading with Technology published at the UO;
school district newsletter Inside Line that goes to 2,000 district staff members;
articles in local newspaper The Register Guard;
presentations by key personnel at conferences and workshops, including the Eugene District Summer Institute; and
a World Wide Web Site about Tale of Two Rivers.
Part 5 Appendices
The appendices have not been included with this proposal.