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$50,000 high-tech ed program for Elkhart elem. school

By Ed Ernstes
Published On: Oct 28 2013 06:27:14 PM CDT
Updated On: Oct 28 2013 08:08:38 PM CDT

Elkhart's Riverview Elementary School has received a $50,000 donation to become the first school in the city with some high-tech hands-on learning for its younger students. WSBT's Ed Ernstes reports.

ELKHART -

A former student at Elkhart's Riverview Elementary is giving back to her school in a big way.

Ashley Martin recently found out the school she attended needed money to buy the latest technology, so she stepped in to give Riverview nearly $50,000.

The technology is called an interactive light board or 'mart board' for short.

It allows students to interact directly with whatever subject matter is projected.

Riverview had 'smart boards' for some but not all teachers.

Martin obtained almost $50,000 from the foundation founded by her parents, Rex and Alice Martin of NIBCO, and gave back to Riverview.

"I actually went to Riverview, and so I went to them and asked, 'You know, what do you need, how can I help?,' because I feel they helped me a lot in my beginning years, and so, I want them to continue to help students," said Ashley Martin.

For teachers, it's 21st Century technology at its best.

"I use this board in all of my subjects, and it's a way to get my students out of their seat, up their and actually show their learning, and with all the videos, because anything I pull up on my computer, I can pull up on the white board," said 6th grade teacher Douglas Hunnings.

Until now, Riverview only had the resources to have these smart boards in grades three through six. Now, as a result of the new grant money, they have been put in grades K through 2nd grade.

"We've had the technology in our upper grade classrooms for a few years now, but the district has not been able to provide the funds to do kindergarten through second, and that's what Ashley Martin did for Riverview at a significant cost," noted Riverview Principal Barbara Cripe.

With the addition of the new smart boards, Riverview becomes the first elementary in Elkhart to have the new technology at the younger grade levels.