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Partnership to Help State's Teachers Develop
Bell Atlantic Project Support to Total $125,000
October 3, 1996
Harry Mitchell, 304-344-7562
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- In a unique project, private
joining forces with secondary and higher education to revolutionize
the educational experience in West Virginia.
Bell Atlantic-West Virginia, West Virginia University and 13
kindergarten through twelfth-grade public schools in the north-central
region of the state are collaborating on an "On-line Multimedia
Development Project." This project is designed to identify ways to
more effectively integrate technology into the state's classrooms.
WVU's College of Human Resources and Education is spearheading the
project in cooperation with the 13 area schools cited as
Development Schools." These schools have had a long-standing
relationship with WVU in a wide variety of professional areas,
including teacher preparation.
Bell Atlantic is supporting the project with a cash grant and in-kind
contributions totaling $125,000 as well as its telecommunications
Under the On-line Multimedia Development Project, selected teachers
from seven of the involved schools developed 12 Internet-based course
curriculum units at a month-long summer institute on the WVU campus.
A team from the university then transformed one of those curriculum
units into a multimedia module available for on-line access by any of
the involved schools initially, and other schools throughout the state
ultimately. These schools have Internet access through the Bell
Atlantic® WORLD SCHOOLsm program.
The first multimedia curriculum unit developed under the project is
"West Virginia's Appalachian Music and Literature," which is
to help students learn about the state's rich heritage in these areas.
The unit was developed by Avis Caynor and Renee Wyatt, teachers at
West Milford Elementary School.
Based on the success of this initial multimedia module, other modules
may be developed in the 1996-97 school year.
"This initiative is an important first step in placing powerful,
network-based multimedia tools in the hands of our state's
said Dennis Bone,
president and CEO of Bell Atlantic-West Virginia,
Inc. "I'm particularly pleased to note that the applications being
developed in this project are being designed by teachers for
"We're very excited about the potential of the On-Line Multimedia
Development Project," said Dr. John Wells, assistant professor in
WVU's Technology Education department and project director.
"Integrating technology into education has two equally critical
components -- getting the technology into the classroom, and preparing
teachers to harness the power of technology to help students learn
with it. This project will go a long way toward making that happen."
The On-Line Multimedia Development Project complements the WORLD SCHOOL
program, under which Bell Atlantic is providing digital, high-speed
Internet access to the more than 700 K-12 public schools in its West
Virginia service area. Nearly 350 schools now are on-line through
"It's great to see that this private sector, public and higher
education effort is beginning to define new and innovative ways in
which the WORLD SCHOOL program can benefit its primary targets --
teachers and students," said Bone.
Bell Atlantic has invested more than $50 million in educational
initiatives such as WORLD SCHOOL and the On-line Multimedia
Development Project throughout its mid-Atlantic service area over the
last two years.
Bell Atlantic Corporation (NYSE:
BEL) is at the forefront of the new
communications, entertainment and information industry. In the
mid-Atlantic region, the company is the premier provider of local
telecommunications and advanced services. Globally, it is one of the
largest investors in the high-growth wireless communication
marketplace. Bell Atlantic also owns a substantial interest in
Telecom Corporation of New Zealand and is actively developing
high-growth national and international business opportunities in all
phases of the industry.