Buffalo County Superintendent of Schools
P. O. Box 1270
Kearney, NE 68847 USA
v: (308) 236-1240
Education, K12; Education, continuing or distance
Innovative or improved ways of doing things; More equitable access to technology or electronic information; Local commitment to network-based activities
Supporting Documentation (contact author for more information):
Dear Senator Kerrey,
I am an elementary administrator working to implement a project dealing with computers and the internet in the small, rural elementary schools in central Nebraska. In my 28 years as an educator this is the most exciting project that I have worked with. The response of students, teachers, and parents has been overwhelmingly positive.
Our multi-grade elementary classes have been using the internet to contact other schools both in Nebraska and the United States. When we become comfortable in this country I will introduce the teachers and students to some of the international opportunities that exist on the internet. What a wonderful way to expose our rural kids to the world!
The students are running curriculum contests among the schools. We have classrooms using the weather data available on the internet to do a wide variety of learning projects. Schools are monitoring the hours of daylight at the reporting stations in Alaska to demonstrate the effects of the tilting of the earth on the seasons. Schools are gathering data to teach graphing and other mathematical techniques. The use of the internet in elementary classrooms is endless. In our cross-curriculum, whole language environment this is an excellent tool.
There is an essay written by an elementary student on display at the Kearney Hilltip Mall. This student says, “I learned more on the internet in the last two months than I learned in the last five years.” Now I think that is an exaggeration, but it does demonstrate the appeal of this medium for students.
We have bright, eager young students in Nebraska. The internet is an ideal medium for putting them in touch with the world. I certainly would encourage you to support any measures to strengthen this program. I would also like to encourage you to support measures to keep free or reasonably priced access to the NREN system available for educational use.
Thank you for your interest in this project.