Sacred Heart Academy has announced a new educational technology program that will launch with the incoming freshmen (Class of 2024) in September 2020.
This new program facilitates high level problem solving and critical thinking skills and enables students to reach New York State Education Department (NYSED) and the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) standards.
The program supports the educational technology vision that was articulated by Principal S. Jean Amore, CSJ, PhD, and is included in Sacred Heart Academy’s Strategic Plan.
“The whole community was very clear that technology should be used to enhance teaching; however, there is no substitute for the relationship between student and teacher,” Sister Jean said. “A challenging and humanistic curriculum has to have a spiritual, moral and social component where students engage with one another and adults. Through interaction with faculty, students are influenced, inspired and find meaning and purpose in life and, after careful research, we decided that Google’s tools offer the best platform for collaboration between our students and faculty.”
With the support of the Board of Trustees, the technology infrastructure in the Academy building was upgraded to support the increased needs for educational technology. A school-issued Chromebook will be incorporated into the cost for the incoming freshmen class. The devices will be purchased and supported by Sacred Heart Academy’s Technology office.
“The use of technology at SHA provides opportunities for instruction that are differentiated, individualized, collaborative, creative and motivating,” said Sacred Heart Academy President, Kristin Lynch Graham. “We have studied and learned from other schools who are utilizing educational technology and our goal was to create a program that was focused on college readiness, and helped to prepare students for how technology will be used on college campuses.”
Four faculty members (Caroline Walsh, Kristen Schreiner, Kathryn Mulholland and Terry Sheriffs) were identified as Ed Tech coaches to support the program within the school. The four were certified as Google teachers and have been providing personalized professional development to the other faculty members, who have all been provided with a Chromebook and have been preparing for the program’s launch. The faculty have invited all current students to Google classroom and have been using different technology apps and programs with the Google Suite to supplement the classroom learning experience.
This educational technology program supports Sacred Heart Academy’s mission to provide the highest academic and spiritual standards to prepare and empower women leaders to be mindful of their call to work for reconciliation, justice and peace in an increasingly interdependent and connected global community. Sacred Heart Academy empowers young women to be 21st century leaders and to lead with heart, compassion, courage and commitment.
Further details about the program will be provided to the Class of 2024 with their acceptance letters in early 2020.