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ORAU awards $30,000 to Lake City Middle School in 2014 Extreme Classroom Makeover

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 14, 2014
FY14-28

One teacher's hope for money to create a technology-enhanced classroom was realized today as ORAU presented middle school science teacher Susan Silvey with $30,000 during an assembly at Lake City Middle School in Anderson County.

LAKE CITY, Tenn.—Students’ learning environments have a direct effect on the success and growth of a community—this was the idea of one local middle school teacher when she submitted her video for the 2014 ORAU Extreme Classroom Makeover Competition. Her hope for money to create a technology-enhanced classroom was realized today as ORAU presented middle school science teacher Susan Silvey with $30,000 during an assembly at Lake City Middle School in Anderson County. The funding is part of ORAU’s annual Extreme Makeover Competition, now in its sixth year.

Through her winning video, Silvey explains the positive impact increased technology in the schools would have, not only on students but the community as a whole.

“Science and math are two important factors that help form the foundation of innovation,” explained ORAU President and CEO Andy Page. “ORAU believes through programs like the Extreme Classroom Makeover, we can bring excitement to teachers and students on critical STEM subjects, which in turn, can help strengthen our nation’s future competitiveness.”

One of the goals of the contest is to also encourage local businesses to support the mission of placing technology in the classroom to enhance teaching and learning. This year, ORAU received a donation of $5,000 from Roane State Community College.

“We are excited to support ORAU’s Extreme Classroom Makeover because technology, in the hands of outstanding teachers such as Susan Silvey, engages students in the learning process,” said Dr. Whaley, Roane State Community College President. “We also fully support programs that enhance STEM education, which is crucial to creating a highly skilled workforce.”

Page and Whaley surprised the winning teacher Monday during a school-wide assembly at Lake City Middle School.

ORAU’s Extreme Classroom Makeover highlights and supports educators like Silvey who are working on the front lines of the education system and illustrates how technology in the classroom helps teachers inspire more students to pursue math- and science-based careers.

Contestants entering ORAU’s competition must teach math or science in a public school located within 50 miles of Oak Ridge. Additionally, a teacher must submit a short video illustrating the classroom’s need and explain how the new technologies would be used to energize and enhance learning.

Next steps for Ms. Silvey include the selection, purchase and installation of new technology to make over the classroom. Later in the summer, ORAU will unveil the redesigned classroom in a special event for the students and their parents.

Previous Extreme Classroom Makeover winners include:

Winners have typically purchased items such as additional computers, iPads, digital cameras, a clicker system, television, promethean boards and other technology that helped advance his students’ learning activities.

View the winning video for the Extreme Classroom Makeover competition.

ORAU provides innovative scientific and technical solutions to advance national priorities in science, education, security and health. Through specialized teams of experts, unique laboratory capabilities and access to a consortium of more than 100 major Ph.D.-granting institutions, ORAU works with federal, state, local and commercial customers to advance national priorities and serve the public interest. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation and federal contractor, ORAU manages the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

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