partners to share grant funding over three years
U.Va., Three Others
Receive $7.2 Million From State, Gates Foundation to Place Technology
in All State Schools
August 29, 2001--
The University of Virginia's Curry
School of Education is one of four recipients of a three-year,
$7.2 million grant partially funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates
Foundation to train all K-12 superintendents and principals throughout
Virginia to implement technology to improve teaching in all state
Gates Foundation provided a $3.6 million challenge grant to the
state, meaning Virginia had to match that amount to receive the
outside money, which it did. U.Va. plus Virginia Tech, the state
Department of Education and VETA -- the Virginia Educational Technology
Alliance, a coalition of universities that focus on teacher education
-- will share the proceeds from the grant over three years. The
project is known as the Virginia Initiative for Technology and Administrative
Leadership, or VITAL.
G. Schoeny, associate professor in the Curry School's leadership,
foundations and policy department, will manage the University of
Virginia's portion of the grant. Over the past two to three years,
he has developed curriculum for training the K-12 school administrators
to integrate technology into the schools as a teaching tool.
statewide program this grant will support is an outgrowth of that
curriculum," Schoeny said. "We found we get the best results when
we take this program on the road to the schools and school districts
so we can train the principals and superintendents on their own
turf around their own schedules. On-site, face-to-face training
over a longer period of time -- in fact, throughout a whole school
year -- works better than short training sessions in unfamiliar
will work with its other three grant partners to take the training
to all school districts throughout Virginia during the next three
years. Schoeny says the four entities will
the technology needs of each school before the training the administrators.
He added that this assessment would include teachers' input "because
they will be on the front line actually using the equipment in the
also said that Chris O'Neal will manage the VITAL grant for the
four entities. O'Neal was former project director of the Gates technology
grant in Louisiana and was that state's director of technology.
The Curry School's Center for Technology and Teacher Education will
provide administrative assistance to support the grant.
to the Gates Foundation and the state's generosity, we expect that
this grant will help all of today's students throughout Virginia
to more easily bridge the digital divide so they can enter college
and the workplace on equal footing," Schoeny said.
Ann Overton, (434) 924-1325