On April 20, the Plano Independent School District unveiled its new $300,000 mobile computer lab, an outreach effort to connect needy families with social services and better engage parents in their children’s learning, reports the Dallas Morning News. Few, if any, other school districts have created a moving classroom that specifically targets parents. The project is especially distinctive because it’s funded with federal stimulus dollars set aside for low-income students. “The primary goal is to build relationships with parents and to create pathways back to the school building,” Cathy Galloway, the district’s executive director of student and family services, said as board members wedged inside. The mobile lab has 13 computer stations for parents with accompanying headsets. It will be staffed by school administrators, a police officer, and bilingual volunteers to help parents who struggle with internet access or need to learn Microsoft Office. Parents will be able to access their children’s grades, work on financial literacy skills, or follow along with English language programs…

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Laura Ascione

Laura Ascione is the Managing Editor, Content Services at eSchool Media. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland's prestigious Philip Merrill College of Journalism. When she isn't wrangling her two children, Laura enjoys running, photography, home improvement, and rooting for the Terps. Find Laura on Twitter: @eSN_Laura http://twitter.com/eSN_Laura