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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  June 5, 2012 

Contact:  Barbara Hamm Lee, WHRO Corporate Communications, 757.889.9107 

WHRO PRESENTS GEDDY AWARDS TO AREA SCHOOLS
Schools Honored for Integration of Technology into Classrooms
   
NORFOLK:  WHRO announced today that it has awarded the 2012 Vernon M. Geddy, Jr. Awards to three area public schools.
  The Vernon M. Geddy, Jr. Award was established by WHRO’s Board of Directors in April 2004 to recognize regional public schools perceived as most effectively integrating technology into the curriculum, as well as increasing overall school efficiencies and student performance.  The award is named in honor of the late Williamsburg attorney and former Mayor of the City of Williamsburg, whose advocacy for education and commitment to the region are well known.  Mr. Geddy served for many years on the governing Board of Directors of the Hampton Roads Educational Telecommunications Association (HRETA), which does business as WHRO.  He served on several of its committees, including the Executive, Audit & Finance and Nominating committees.

In determining each year’s Geddy Award honorees, relative size, budget, community partnerships and special circumstances are considered.  Nominations are solicited through WHRO’s Educational Advisory Committee and Superintendents Advisory Council.

The 2012 Elementary School Geddy Award was presented to Rosemont Elementary School of Virginia Beach City Public Schools.  Even though Rosemont is a small school, it has been able to combine funding from a variety of sources and make use of community partners to maximize technology.  Each teacher has a Nook®, a Promethean® board, a Promethean slate and a document camera to deliver daily lessons.  All students use ActivExpression™ remotes to provide instant data to their teachers.  IPads® are in use by all kindergarten through fifth grade teachers and students to create projects, review concepts and work collaboratively with each other.  SharePoint® is used to provide assignments, lessons and tests.  Special Education students have access to several programs, including V-Mast, Ignite! Torch™ and Kurzweil™.  Using technology has shown an increase in scores and pass rates for students across the board in all classes.  Data shows that all students can increase their learning and potential through the use of technology and Rosemont has taken advantage of the tools to help its students.

In the Middle School category, the Geddy award was presented to Lynnhaven Middle School of Virginia Beach City Public Schools.  Lynnhaven worked with its PTA to provide 64 Kindles™, which resulted in an increase in reading comprehension and vocabulary identification.  Using WIX.com, 8th grade English teachers and 7th grade social studies teachers helped students create digital portfolios.  As part of the project, students created Wordles™, which were then ironed on t-shirts for students to wear proudly.  Students also used MovieMaker® to showcase their experiences to the school.  Because many of the parents are military, Lynnhaven works hard to provide communication between the school and home.  They use Prezi™ to showcase exciting projects.  The school uses an “Alert Now” phone and email system, as well as a weekly ListServ™ message, and the PTA newsletter is emailed to all families.  Lynnhaven has been so successful with its use of technology that it is determining the feasibility of “Bring You Own Devices” for the 2012-13 school year.

The High School Geddy Award was presented to First Colonial High School of Virginia Beach City Public Schools.  Students at First Colonial use technology devices such as computers, Kindles, iPads, iPod Touches®, Promethean boards and clickers regularly in their classes to record and edit videos, take and post pictures, record audio interviews, conduct research and blog.  They are engaged as they practice what they will use in the real world.  Their teachers participate in training and provide training to other teachers as well.  Their Library Media Specialist and two Computer Resource Specialists are ISTE NET-S Capstone Certified.  Several grants and community partnerships help to support their growing technology needs.  This school was given the Geddy Award in 2010 and deserves it again this year.

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WHRO is a regional media company that promotes education, culture and citizenship to the citizens of Hampton Roads, Virginia through a variety of services.  Every day, thousands of viewers and listeners tune in to broadcast programming on WHRO’s four public television and eight public radio stations.  Since its founding in 1961 to support education, WHRO has employed creativity and technology to serve its mission to enrich audiences through content that educates, entertains and promotes understanding.  Owned by 18 local school divisions, WHRO delivers educational and new media services to 286,000 students and 25,000 educators per month as well.