Technology Grant for San Francisco Schools

Patricia Hawke

San Francisco’s Unified School District has received a million dollar technology grant from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (AARA) Title II, Part D, Enhancing Education Through Technology Competitive Grant Program. The state of California won this federal grant and the winning districts included Alameda, Los Angeles, Elk Grove, Fresno, Long Beach and San Diego.  This grant is designed to help the schools to improve their technical devices and give students the best materials to better their education.
Technology is so prevalent in todays working world that it makes sense to have a very strong technological influence in schools. Elementary, Middle and High schools nationwide are gearing programs toward technology and using technical metrical in everyday classrooms to keep up with society’s lean towards technology and new devices.  By preparing students with the right equipment, they will have a better chance at succeeding in todays work environment.
Everything is using technology in the work environment these days. Most companies have to go online, or they will go out of business. The new generations are starting to only buy online and do research online. People would rather than be face-face with others. With the use of twitter, Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, etcetera, companies can reach a larger number of potential clients than ever before. Technology is changing the way we do business. By having a head start in learning hands on with technological materials and devices, our students will have a much easier time starting their career.
The San Francisco Unified School District is using their one million dollar federal grant they won to make improvements of the ninth grade “Plan Ahead” college and career course. This prepares students to get ready for their life as a college student and in the workforce. Most unsuccessful college experiences come from not planning ahead while in high school and not being well enough prepared for what the expectations of the “real world” and college have. 
The “Plan Ahead” program is an eighteen-week course that is becoming available in all high schools coming this fall. This program will be serving 4500 students per year. This program is geared for students to find out what their strengths and interests are, ask questions of themselves and start to decide what they want their careers to be.  By starting early in the search to find themselves, students can have goals and start preparing for what they want their life to be.
The technology grant is going to fund the “Plan Ahead’s” online curriculums digital online platform, which will create student based digital portfolios and web reports. It will also fund Interactive boards, several laptops, document cameras, student response systems and projectors.  These all will help better prepare students for the “real world” in getting them familiar with these devices that we now use on an everyday basis.
Another great program that this technology grant is funding is the data-based Dropout Prevention Early Warning System. This system will automatically inform the teachers if a student is making the signals to be a dropout. This will be a great program to help students stay in school. All of this technology is created to help better our children’s chances at having a successful education and career and this grant is going to help incredibly.
Patricia Hawke is a staff writer for Schools K-12, providing free, in-depth reports on all U.S. public and private K-12 schools. For more information please visit  San Francisco School Ratings and  San Francisco School Rankings