PIKEVILLE, KY and ARMONK, NY - 14 Jul 2008: IBM (NYSE: IBM) and Pike County School today announced they have signed an enhanced internet access agreement to provide Virtual Infrastructure Access desktop hosting services to the school district.
As part of the 5-year agreement, IBM will provide Pike County Schools with an internet access service that gives older PCs the ability to access the internet and applications in a manner similar to more current systems. Schools traditionally purchase classroom PCs each year, resulting in a mix of vintages, models, and compute resources. There is an inherent inequality in this approach because some classrooms may have computers up to six years old whiles other deploy workstations that are less than one year old.
This service is made possible via IBM hosted virtual desktops delivered as part of Pike County's internet access service. IBM storage, System x servers, VMware, and Desktone software are part of the hosted architecture used to deliver the service to Pike County's 25 schools.
"As an educator, I know the importance of providing equality in the classroom," said Maritta Clark, chief information officer, Pike County Schools. "Current K-12 technology funding challenges our ability to provide equal information technology access.
"With IBM's innovative, enhanced internet access approach, the six-year-old PCs perform at the same level as the new systems and have the added benefit of delivering the district's standard desktop image on any PC or thin client device with the ability to support an internet browser."
The technology will also allow the potential for students who may be home bound and teachers who may need to work from home to have access to their work from any location with an internet connection with the same security and filtering as if they were in the classroom.
"This potential means students who may be too ill to be in the classroom can still keep up with their coursework and not fall behind their classmates," Clark said.
The agreement, supporting more than 1,400 devices, was signed in June of 2008.
"We think this is an answer to our replacement dilemma during this time of budget constraints," said Roger Wagner, Superintendent for Pike County Schools. "Our district will be able to provide equitable access with our existing equipment. Now we don't have to forego our technology initiative for lack of adequate equipment."
About Pike County Schools
The Pike County School District is in the rural foothills of the Appalachian Mountains in Pike County, the eastern most and largest county in the state of Kentucky. Pike County is the home of 25 public educational facilities, administered by the Pike County Board of Education, located at the county seat, in Pikeville, Kentucky. The Pike County School District is comprised of 15 elementary schools, three middle school programs, five high schools, and two day treatment centers. It is also affiliated with, and is an integral part of two Kentucky Tech. Vocational education facilities. The school district, having the sixth largest pupil enrollment in the state, boasts an academic performance level above most state testing indices, placing it among the leading districts in the state. The school system is a diverse combination of educational programs, offering equitable and safe educational environments, which translate into successful learning experiences for all students.
The primary focus of technology in our district is to ensure equity of access to the most modern and effective voice, video and data technology tools and services possible for students, teachers and administrators. At the district level, we assist schools by providing the skills training and resources needed to promote a high level of instructional use of technology in the classroom, guaranteeing to our students the skills and confidence needed to not only compete, but excel in our global society. A few of the district technology initiatives currently being supported are: Pike's BEST Academy (Better Education with Standards and Technology) for teachers, integrating Ky. Technology Teaching Proficiency Standards in our curriculums, introduction of web based online testing and alignment of curriculums and course content through web based software which will allow teachers to share resources from classroom to classroom.
For more information visit www.pike.k12.ky.us
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