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Goldfields School students Elijah Barrett, left, and Moses Wong-Tung with one of the school’s ActivPanels. Photo: GORDON PREECE

Funding boost for educational screens

A Goldfields School learning tool has been given a financial boost after more than $14,000 was donated by the New Zealand Community Trust (NZCT).
The Paeroa school received a $14,303 donation to go towards installing more ActivPanel interactive touch-screens to allow its 87 students and 67 staff to use.
Principal Cam McKenzie told The Profile the donation was “great” and the school “really appreciated it”.
“The class that gets the technology, the ActivPanel, they use it for their morning programme, for maths, for literacy, sensory lessons, songs, YouTube, and special programmes that we can put on there for students with diverse learning needs,” he said.
“A lot of them learn by touch, sound and sight, so these interactive boards are perfect, they’re really big and most of them can adjust to any height so students in wheelchairs can use them.
“They’re $14,000 complete and the Board of Trustees had a plan to get a new one every year, so this funding helps us to get them sooner instead of waiting because we’ve got 13 classes.”
Mr McKenzie said the ActivPanels were supplied by Active Vision and the school was installing more to replace “glitchy” older ones.
“Because some of the old boards are 18 years old and they’re glitchy, the students get upset when they’re not working properly and so these new boards work really well,” he said. “The past four years I’ve been here we’ve started installing them, we’ve had about six in the past four years, so this will be the seventh and eighth, one at Thames and one [in Paeroa].
“We also got $10,000 from The Lion Foundation at the same time as [NZCT] funding so we’re getting two [ActivPanels] and paying for one so we’re getting three.”