Ryan High School has received word of its selection to receive a grant from the Oklahoma Educational Technology Trust.
The news of the selection was shared last Thursday with Ryan High School principal Tony Tomberlin.
The grant totals $65,000 and is divided into designated money for equipment and money for professional development for faculty at Ryan High School.
The high school was selected out of multiple schools from across the state of Oklahoma meaning grade schools, middle schools and high schools.
Application for the grant had to be made and on average only about 18 to 20 schools have been selected since grants were first awarded in 2001.
“This grant will help prepare our students for college and give them new and more interactive ways to learn,” said Ryan superintendent of schools Marcus Chapman.
“We are very excited to see this new technology in use,” noted Chapman. “A big thanks goes to our technology committee for the time and effort put into writing this grant!”
The trust which was first established with a $30 million gift by AT&T Oklahoma exists to equip Oklahoma common school and Career Tech students with the technology and technological skills necessary to compete in today’s global marketplace.
The grant provides funds for computer and telecommunications equipment, infrastructure, leadership and professional development to implement and advance integration of technology into classroom instruction.
It took Ryan High School officials two tries to receive the grant and it was a two-year process.
“The grant has been a long process,” said Tomberlin. “It is a high school only grant and you have to apply by school and not district.”
The faculty of the high school put together a desired plan and vision for technology use at the school and a technology team wrote the grant.
Members of the technology team included Angie Underwood, Seth Miranda, Kim Rhoades, Raquel Welchel and Tomberlin. Natalie Seay was also instrumental in the process.
Ryan High School is the only school in southwest Oklahoma to receive the grant for this year.
Tomberlin outlined the plans for the grant money designated for equipment.
“We will use the money to purchase two augmented reality tables, digital microscopes, several augmented/virtual reality headsets, 3-D printers and some other technology to go with it,” explained Tomberlin.
The OETT was established in 2001 as a result of an agreement between then Oklahoma Attorney General Drew Edmonson and AT&T Oklahoma during the company’s transition to a modern form of regulation. AT&T establishing the trust with the gift was part of the agreement.
Through the years, OETT has granted approximately $21 million worth of technology and professional development to 289 schools across Oklahoma. This initiative has reached well over 12,000 teachers and 150,000 students in communities and schools both large and small across the state of Oklahoma.
Interested schools have to successfully complete leadership training offered and after completing this stage, the next step is for administrators of schools to become eligible to apply for the grant money. The grant recipients are required to provide a 10% match ($4,000) that can be used for technology and equipment.