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Contact:  Bobbie Fisher, Chief Communications Officer, 757.889.9107

Schools Honored for Integration of Technology into Classrooms

NORFOLK:  WHRO announced today that it has awarded the 2009 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.  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 addition, he was a charter member of the WHRO Foundation.

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 2009 Elementary School Geddy Award will be presented to Linkhorn Park Elementary School in the Virginia Beach Public School Division.  Linkhorn Park has used technology to increase student learning and achievement, overall school efficiencies, and community partnerships. Their student connections with other schools and scientists, along with the dedication of their teachers to improve their own knowledge, have shown Linkhorn Park’s commitment to preparing students for the 21st century global society.

In the Middle School category, the Geddy Award will be presented to Berkeley Middle School, in the Williamsburg/James City County Public School Division.  Using funds from Community Partnerships, along with system upgrades, students and teachers have participated in real-world projects and global collaborations that have kept students actively engaged both within school,  after school programs, and into the home setting.  Technology integration at Berkeley has allowed the school to become a greener, paperless facility. 

The Geddy Award in the High School category will be presented to Mathews High School in Mathews County.  Although a small school by today’s standards (450 students), Mathews has managed to integrate technology effectively to bring the school into the 21st century.  Students in all departments are actively using technology in their daily classroom activities as well as collaborating with local organizations and government offices to provide real-world services.  Using a train-the-trainer model, teachers learn from each other and from regional and national services to improve what they do.  Teachers are also developing online Moodle courses to support their content.  Alert Now and system-provided emails to students keep all students and parents connected to the school community.