C.L. "BUTCH" OTTER
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 14, 2010
CONTACT: Jon Hanian
GOVERNOR OTTER, SUPERINTENDENT LUNA RECOGNIZE IDAHO EDUCATION NETWORK HEROES
(BOISE) – Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna recognized nine pioneering educators today on the first anniversary of the Idaho Education Network (IEN).
The “Talk” awards highlight innovative uses of Idaho’s new super high-speed, interactive educational network that makes real-time, two-way education possible. Each recipient’s school will receive a $250 prize to use toward further innovation via the IEN.
“After just one year, approximately 40 percent of Idaho high schools and more than 33,000 students are connected to the Idaho Education Network,” Governor Otter said. “These awards highlight educators who are leading the way in tapping the full and incredible potential of this new technology.”
To demonstrate the power of the network’s technology, the Governor and Superintendent Luna made the presentations live from the State Department of Education, connecting with high schools statewide.
The IEN equips high school classrooms with giant screens and multiple cameras powered by fiber-optic technology, which allows students and teachers to “visit” virtually anywhere in the world, and to talk and learn from others in real time, face to face. The technology provides schools with significantly more bandwidth, and in the case of some schools, it’s ten times the capacity prior to the IEN.
A primary purpose of the system is to increase access to educational opportunities in Idaho’s schools, especially in rural communities.
“Every day we strive to meet the needs of all students, no matter where they live or what they want to be when they grow up. The IEN will help us accomplish this goal,” Superintendent Luna said. “The IEN bridges the digital divide between urban and rural communities in Idaho, providing unprecedented educational opportunities to students regardless of where they live in our great state. Now, students have access to any high school or college-level course via the IEN.”