Corporate partnerships benefit Canadian schools and are supported by the public



    
    - Future Shop provides opportunity for secondary schools with leading
    resources in the classroom -
    

    BURNABY, BC, Sept. 9 /CNW/ - Future Shop, in partnership with
participating local school boards, opened four Future Generation Tech Labs
today, solidifying the company's commitment to secondary students and schools
across Canada and addressing one of their leading challenges. With an
increasing demand for digital tools in the classrooms, principals have
reported that funding for computers and related equipment is an ongoing
challenge(*). In response, The Future Generation Tech Lab program, established
in April 2009, contributes $50,000 donations to each of the selected schools
to upgrade classrooms into leading edge technology centres.
    To gain an accurate assessment of Canadians thoughts on corporate
donations in schools, Future Shop commissioned an Ipsos Reid survey(xx) and
found a majority of Canadians (77 per cent) do not believe it is their
responsibility to raise funds for school resources, while 87 per cent were in
support of corporation donations made to public schools.
    "We have the ability to help provide digital tools to schools to inspire
motivate, and empower secondary students across Canada," said Todd Empey,
vice-president, operations, Future Shop. "The Future Generation Tech Lab
program is designed to give schools the modern technology required to deliver
enriched learning environments for our youth".

    
    The survey results also found:

    -   Ninety-seven per cent of Canadians indicated it is important for
        students to have access to up-to-date technology in school
    -   Ninety per cent of women are supportive of corporate donations to
        schools
    -   Parents (93 per cent) have an even higher propensity to support
        corporate donations to public schools than those without children (83
        per cent). Support is widespread across Canada
    

    The Future Generation program endeavours to help reduce the economic and
digital divide for grades 10-12 students in schools considered by their
districts to be high in need. This year, the following four schools were
selected: R.C. Palmer Secondary School in Richmond, BC; Marc Garneau
Collegiate Institute and Western Technical Commercial School in Toronto, ON;
and Dartmouth High School in Dartmouth, NS.

    
    -   R.C. Palmer Secondary School will launch a multi-media lab that will
        offer grade 10-12 students with access to unique programs including
        Music Composition and Broadcasting. Richmond's Virtual School, which
        boasts one of the highest completion rates in the province, will also
        find a permanent home in the lab and allow expansion of the program's
        offerings to the District's students.

    -   Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute took a digital arts program to the
        next level with a new digital media publishing centre to match their
        newly created "Specialist High Skills Major" and Co-op. Students in
        the dual credit program will work on university credits, experience
        post-secondary courses while completing their high school diploma,
        and build confidence in their abilities.

    -   Western Technical-Commercial School is focusing on a broader program
        around the competency and enjoyment of 21st century literature, to
        inspire students to learn and engage in the world before them.
        Together with the school's award-winning locally developed course in
        Writer's Craft and Children's Literature, the new equipment and café-
        like room will serve as the school hub for Media Studies and the new
        home for their school newspaper Hidden Agenda.

    -   Dartmouth High School will launch a multi-purpose innovations lab to
        support art, science, technology and communications programs. The
        Innovations Lab will house 'audio-video' broadcasting to share
        important school events and information with staff and students. This
        will enhance the school's communications system to a level of new
        interest and awareness that the traditional PA system simply could
        not achieve.
    

    "The Future Generation Tech Lab program is still in its early stages and
we are very excited with the overall response and support we have received
from participating schools across the country," said Empey. "We want to
continue to help make a positive impact in our communities, and we believe
that providing resources is one of the best ways we can help our local
communities and schools succeed."
    To learn more about Future Shop' Future Generation Tech Lab program,
please visit www.futureshop.ca/futuregeneration

    
    (*) These are findings from the ICTSS that was conducted in October 2003
        by Statistics Canada in partnership with the sponsor of the survey,
        Industry Canada's SchoolNet program. For more information please
        visit http://www.statcan.gc.ca/kits-trousses/courses-cours/edu05_0008a-eng.htm.

    (xx)These are findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted on behalf of
        Future Shop from July 14-22, 2009. This online survey of 1,018 adults
        aged 18 and older in Canada is accurate within +/- 3.1 percentage
        points, 19 times out of 20.

    About Future Shop's Future Generation
    

    The Future Generation Tech Lab program expands on a nearly 10-year
commitment to support students and education in Canada. Since 2001, Future
Shop has donated over 500 post-secondary scholarships (valued at $3,000 each),
over 600 computers to non-profit partners and five Tech Labs to secondary
schools across Canada. Each of Future Shop's 142 stores donates to non-profits
and communities on an individual basis, and supports employee volunteerism
with Volunteer Awards.





For further information:

For further information: For media inquiries, please contact: Cheryl
Grant, Future Shop, chgrant@futureshop.com, (604) 412-1008, C (778) 999-0535;
Elliott Chun, Future Shop, echun@futureshop.com, (604) 412-1764, C (778)
990-9342; Stefanie Niewada, Optimum PR, stefanie.niewada@cossette.com, (416)
934-8020, C (416) 937-5103

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