Free OER content and app for tablets and Android devices save schools money by reducing or eliminating textbook purchases

New York – Aug. 19, 2013 – Net Texts today unveiled a new release of its free, web-based content management system for educators and schools implementing 1:1 computing programs. The latest version of the Net Texts solution includes a variety of upgrades and new features that allow teachers to more quickly and easily create and deliver lessons, units and complete courses using free, high-quality open educational resources (OER).

Thousands of schools around the country are implementing 1:1 computing programs for their potential to customize and extend student learning. But according to Nick Wheatley-Schaller, technology director at Net Texts, what schools didn’t bargain for was the time and cost involved in finding, creating and delivering high-quality digital content to students.

“Because of tight budgets, education leaders have been forced to adopt the approach of ‘doing more with less,’ which is why open educational resources are so attractive,” said Wheatley-Schaller. “But few educators have the time to sift through all the options, to vet the quality, to determine what meets their standards, and to select exactly what lesson, video, or slideshow will make the best unit for their students. And that’s where Net Texts comes in.”

Net Texts is a free, easy-to-use resource that allows teachers to create and customize courses via its robust content management website. The site includes more than 50,000 high-quality resources from leading OER providers such as the CK-12 Foundation, Khan Academy, and Project Gutenberg, organized by subject, grade level, objectives and standards. Teachers can select existing courses from the Net Texts library or mix and match items with their own educational materials. Using a free app for iPads or Android tablets students then download and interact with the courses. And, because the content is stored locally on the devices, there is no need for students to have Wi-Fi access to complete their assignments, thereby extending learning outside the classroom.

New Features
Available now, the new Net Texts content management system includes upgrades that make it even easier for teachers to create challenging, engaging, and customized lessons using free OER. For example, the upgraded browser feature allows teachers to move quickly between content vetted and selected by Net Texts and lessons posted by other teachers, making it easier to find relevant material. Then with the new ‘drag and drop’ option, they can pull together all the items they want for a lesson or a complete unit, and even reorder or replace items to customize lessons for individual students.

The Net Texts Test Creation Module has likewise been improved, allowing teachers to more quickly create a test and add it to a unit. The system includes more than 400 tests that teachers can use as is, or remix with their own test items.

“Even in an age of common learning standards, the need to personalize learning will require a robust choice of curricular resources — proprietary and OER,” said Wheatley-Schaller. “Net Texts is the only open system on the market today. We’re thrilled to be able to offer educators a system that organizes and delivers free, high quality OER, and helps make learning more relevant and exciting.”

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Leslie Eicher, APR
Eicher Communications

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