MOREnet to Partner with Two Missouri Schools in Three-year Projects to Advance Missouri Learning through Technology

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For Immediate Release:
MOREnet Contact: Sherry Loyd, Executive Assistant, (573) 884-2666,
Fulton 58 Contact: Suzanne Hull, Assistant Superintendent, (573) 590-8000,
Grandview R-II Contact: Kathy Bellew, Technology Coordinator, (636) 944-3941 Option 7,

Columbia, MO (August 1, 2013) - The Missouri Research and Education Network (MOREnet) announces they will provide up to $400,000 in funding and nearly $100,000 in in-kind services as they partner with two Missouri K-12 school districts on projects designed to improve student performance through the adoption of technology-enabled, student-centered learning. The Fulton 58 and Grandview R-II school districts will each partner with MOREnet over the next three years to develop and align curriculum, services, training, policies, best practices and related resources for other districts to potentially adopt and adapt within their own communities. Both projects will focus on measuring student outcomes and documenting success stories for the benefit of all MOREnet members.

The Grandview R-II school district proposes to use technology and teacher commitment to ensure that their students will have access to the same opportunities that larger school districts provide. Grandview will personalize student learning through use of the Learning Management System (LMS) in blended and flipped classes and the use of formal data analysis of student progress. "We are excited about what this partnership with MOREnet will bring to the table," states Kathy Bellew, Technology Coordinator, Grandview R-II. "It will be great to not feel like we are going out there on our own."

The project will extend the district's 1:1 program, currently implemented in the high school, to all grades and expand their growing catalog of blended and virtual courses available to students anywhere in the state. Teachers will receive professional development for lesson conversion, technology integration, flipped classrooms and the common core standards.

Grandview will implement new technologies and strategies and expand the use of varying devices, including Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and virtual offerings. Grandview’s goal is for their students to take a greater responsibility for their own learning and ensure college and career-readiness upon graduation.

Fulton Public School's proposal introduces leading-edge technology in a newly constructed Fabrication Laboratory (Fab Lab). A Fab Lab is a small-scale, STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics)-based, multi-disciplinary workshop offering students and, in a later phase, the general public the opportunity for personal fabrication of almost anything. Assistant Superintendent of Fulton Public Schools, Suzanne Hull, said she is excited about all of the different opportunities the "fab lab" will provide for Fulton students. "It's just unbelievable what they'll be able to do in this lab," Hull said. "It is MOREnet's hope, and our hope, that Fulton's fab lab becomes a model for other schools in the state."

The University of Missouri College of Engineering, Ameren UE and Linn State Technical College are committed to provide professional and technical support for the lab. While Fab Labs are commonly associated with engineering, computer programming, design thinking and mathematics courses, the lab will support all subject areas and will become a catalyst for interdisciplinary instruction, enabling teachers and students to create connections between subjects that would traditionally remain in isolated curriculum areas. The lab will consist of a variety of rapid prototyping machines such as 3-D printers, CNC (computer-numerically-controlled) machines, laser cutters and 3-D scanners.

MOREnet received proposals from 24 Missouri school districts. The original intent was to award one partnership but in the end MOREnet granted two partnerships due to the scope and benefits that each project would present to Missouri schools. "We are very excited to begin the partnerships with these schools," states John Gillispie, Executive Director of MOREnet. "We look forward to working closely with both schools and believe the outcome will serve as a blueprint for other Missouri schools in the advancement of technology and learning."