Calcasieu Parish Teams With Bluum to Create EdTech School Funding Model
PHOENIX, AZ – May 24, 2022 – Calcasieu Parish School Board, announced today that it has partnered with Bluum, North America's leading education technology solutions provider, to utilize Title I and Title IV federal funds to invest in 400 MakerBot SKETCH Classroom 3D printers and professional development to advance STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) education. Calcasieu Parish School Board has distinguished itself as a model for how economically disadvantaged school districts can combine forces with education technology providers like Bluum to be financially resourceful and increase education technology access to its students.
Calcasieu Parish School Board, the fifth-largest school district in southwest Louisiana, serves 29,500 students across 60 elementary, middle and high schools. Although all students participate in the National School Lunch Program, after conducting a thorough needs assessment, Calcasieu Parish purchased more than $4.1 million in technology and technology professional development with federal funds under Title I and Title IV to implement the technology within the existing curriculum.
"Technology is continuously evolving, so we need to give all of our students equal opportunities to succeed," Chief Technology Officer at Calcasieu Parish School Board Kim Leblanc said. "We wanted to provide them the technologies that enhanced their critical thinking, collaboration and creativity so that they can compete both academically and in the modern workforce. We appreciate an education technology partner like Bluum that understands the ultimate goal of technology is to enhance teaching and student learning."
Calcasieu Parish School Board's Training Tech Center was already instrumental in introducing new technology to its classrooms, including robotics and a computing device for each student and teacher. However, the Training Tech Center will only embark on new projects supported by professional development and follow ISTE (The International Society for Technology in Education) standards.
"We applaud the efforts of the Calcasieu staff in equipping its students with cutting-edge technology to support their learning journey," Bluum Vice President of Product Ryan Semans said. "The creativity and resourcefulness shown by Calcasieu's staff to use secure Title I and Title IV funds to help level the playing field for student learning are commendable. We're proud to partner with such a forward-thinking school district that shows that that is leveling the playing field in real-time."
Armed with a philosophy to "make it happen in the classroom," Calcasieu Parish School Board is committed to preparing its students for STEAM careers, illustrated by its investments in student design competitions, summer tech camps and a STEM bus. The students are already utilizing the 3D printers in classrooms to solve real-world challenges and develop 3D designing skills within projects.
"We believe that STEAM education is important to the success of future generations," said Nadav Goshen, CEO of MakerBot. "3D printing's versatility as a learning tool as well as a training tool unlocks the possibilities of what can be achieved. Calcasieu Parish School Board continues to stand at the forefront of education to provide the latest technologies to its students to enable them to succeed."
The district's technology team will present at the upcoming ISTE Conference in New Orleans, LA, for those interested in learning more about Calcasieu Parish School Board’s education technology approach. To learn more about partnering with Bluum and utilizing grants and federal funding for technology, please visit https://www.bluum.com/services/planning-service.