Arkansas Department of Education Arkansas and Facebook TechStart Partnership Expansion - Virtual Reality Kit Allocation and Distribution Information

Memo Information

Memo Number
COM-18-019
Memo Date
8/30/2017
Memo Type
Informational
Section
Central Administration
Regulatory Authority
Response Required
NO
Attention
Federal Programs; Superintendents; Principals; Technology Coordinator; Test Coordinator; General Business Manager; Teachers

Contact Information

Memo Text

On August 28, 2017, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced an expansion of the Arkansas and Facebook Partnership.

 

https://governor.arkansas.gov/press-releases/detail/gov.-hutchinson-announces-arkansas-facebook-techstart-partnership-expansion

 

The Arkansas Department of Education (ADE) is pleased to continue its partnership with the Arkansas Public School Resource Center (APSRC) to assist with this expansion. The recently executed contract between Facebook and APSRC requires APSRC to secure a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) from each eligible school that elects to receive one of the VR kits.


In part, the terms of the new agreement stipulate that Facebook will donate virtual reality (VR) kits necessary to expand the availability of one kit to every public high school in Arkansas. In addition, all schools that received a kit under the original agreement and all newly eligible schools will be eligible to receive an Oculus Touch controller and 30 cardboard VR viewers. This donated technology will be used by students and educators in schools and educational partners in professional development offerings.


For eligible schools wishing to participate, the district superintendent or other authorized representative of the school must sign both the “TechStart School Participation Agreement” found at http://bit.ly/2xyPaXU and page five (5) of the Facebook “Program Terms” attached to the Agreement as “Appendix A.” Copies of the signed documents should be e-mailed to APSRC at jketcham@apsrc.net or faxed to 501-492-4305. Once APSRC has received the two signed documents and verified the school’s eligibility, APSRC will notify the local partner of the school’s eligibility.

 

Schools will not receive a full kit until after an executed MOU has been certified by APSRC and a certified local training partner affirms that at least two representatives from the school have been properly trained in the setup and use of the kit.

 

Please note that schools that were eligible under the Spring 2016 award that elected not to participate at that time are no longer eligible. In addition, the new agreement does not allocate an additional kit for schools that also host an EAST lab. However, the school may choose to place the kit within any 9-12 classroom which will allow access to all 9-12 students; this may be an EAST classroom.

 

Distribution of the kits should begin in early October 2017 and should be concluded by April 30, 2018.


The list of eligible schools and local training partners can be accessed at https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1egI3fSgx6D-7f7BND4ZHSSPu1b1aZtlOwhmWY1Gx5eQ/edit?usp=sharing.


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