In its 54th anniversary, the district implements SMART Board® interactive flat panels
CALGARY, AB and LAREDO, TX, May 2, 2016 /CNW/ - SMART Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: SMT) (TSX: SMA), a leading provider in collaborative solutions, is now the standard provider of classroom Interactive Flat Panels, or IFPs, for the United Independent School District (United ISD), in Laredo, Texas. The district, which serves over 43,000 students, will receive 1,300 SMART Board IFPs that will be placed in Kindergarten through 12th grade classrooms over the next year. They will be in addition to IFPs for over one dozen new campus construction and renovation projects slated through the end of 2019, and approved by the passing of a $408.7 million school bond in November of 2013. The SMART IFPs were selected after a comparison between top vendors by a committee of over 50 members from across the district and community.
"SMART was selected not only for their easy-to-use software, but for their excellent hardware, which allows for natural interaction for users of all ages," said Judith Garcia, Director of Instructional Technology at United ISD. "Teachers and students are excited about this new technology-driven opportunity that allows them to use these awesome boards in their classrooms with all the fabulous interactive lessons at their fingertips. The IFPs are easy to use, minimizing the learning curve and simplifying trainings for district and campus staff. Campus instructional staff find it easy to tap into the vast resources available through SMART Notebook software and create interactive lessons using their amazing SMART IFPs," she said.
Additionally, Garcia commented on the integration of SMART's software into classrooms. "We have also benefited from the continuous upgrades with SMART's software, which continues to evolve with our teachers' changing needs in the classroom," she said. "The company truly keeps the academic focus of our teachers at the forefront and has prioritized building the 21st century instructional playground to enhance learning and engagement in our students at heart. They consistently seek feedback and truly listen to our comments and recommendations," she said.
All SMART interactive flat panels include SMART Learning Suite, an integrated educational software platform designed to enable natural and collaborative learning experiences that supports a variety of instructional strategies and fosters active learning, inside and outside the classroom. The SMART Learning Suite includes the following programs:
- SMART Notebook®—This software facilitates engaging and interactive learning experiences while providing the flexibility to respond to the needs of learners in real-time.
- SMART lab™—SMART lab enables teachers to create lesson plans and game-based learning activities in less than five minutes.
- SMART amp™—A web-based learning platform, amp enables student co-creation of assignments and fosters student collaboration on devices.
- SMART response™ 2—A formative assessment software for use on student devices, SMART response 2 allows teachers to create question sets to complement lessons in under five minutes.
"Educators are shifting from legacy interactive displays to state-of-the-art interactive flat panels and we are pleased to bring such advanced tools and capabilities into the classrooms of United ISD," said Greg Estell, President, Solutions of SMART Technologies. "Research proves that when best pedagogical practices are supported by educational software and connected devices, students are more likely to collaborate, learn and engage in the ways that are most natural to them," he said.
To learn more about SMART Board interactive flat panels for education, visit education.smarttech.com/panels.
About United ISD
The 2015-2016 school year marks the United Independent School District's (UISD) 54th Anniversary of providing educational excellence and dedication to student academic success. UISD's history can be traced back to the spring of 1961, when trustees from three common school districts in Webb County met for the purpose of consolidating into one district. The district's intent is to continually seek ways to improve and provide consistent, quality instruction for all students in a positive learning environment.
The District takes great pride in the academic excellence they provide for the community and surrounding areas. UISD has grown from a few schools to 41 campuses, one DAEP and three residential facilities. Since its inception the district has been recognized for distinctions in academics, fiscal responsibility and most recently garnered national recognition for the highest graduation rates. The district and its board are confident that these accomplishments are indicative of a future filled with the best 21st century ready students.
About SMART Technologies Inc.
SMART Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: SMT, TSX: SMA) is a world leader in simple and intuitive solutions that enable more natural collaboration. We are an innovator in interactive touch technologies and software that inspire collaboration in both education and businesses around the globe. To learn more, visit smarttech.com.
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