Converge, December 1998, p. 14
A unique program at Greenbrier High School in Arkansas integrates community and corporate support with hands-on problem solving by students. Students are able to solve real-world problems for local government entities by using the newest and most sophisticated technology available.
To provide students with this high-tech infrastructure, the school forged partnerships with several technology corporations to acquire the necessary equipment and software. Then the school drew from the talents and resources of higher education institutions, public agencies, and the private sector.
In the classroom, the teacher is not seen as a dispenser of knowledge; rather, the teacher serves as facilitator to help students develop problem-solving skills and computer experience.
Students became able to provide real-life solutions to local government agencies on tasks that ranged from a mapping project for the fire department, to accident reporting applications for the police department, to electronic school-site assessments for the school board.
The program not only benefits the community by solving its problems, but it also prepares students to enter the technical job market with solid experience.