- Faced with a need to effectively recycle technology, Towson University partnered with Baltimore County Public Schools on the EduCycle Computer Reconditioning Program, which repurposes decommissioned surplus computers to K-12 schools, according to EdTech: Focus on K-12.
- The program was prompted by the poor computer lab conditions that Theresa Jenkins, the manager of Technology, Facilities and Events at Towson, witnessed at her daughter's public school, and the program has become a win-win for the district and university alike via an associated internship that allows both high school and college students to get hands-on experience.
- Additionally, EdTech notes that local higher ed institutions can supplement K-12 schools with technological expertise they might not otherwise have access to, noting efforts between MIT and the Atlantis Charter School as well as the University of Texas at San Antonio and San Antonio Independent School District.
Ultimately, the Towson/BCPS partnership helps both parties save money while also allowing Towson an avenue to benefit the local community via a sustainability avenue. Beyond curriculum and resources increasingly going digital, so too are the ever-important mandated assessments districts are federally required to administer each year. As a result, reliable computers and other devices are, of course, as important as robust infrastructure to ensure all students are able to take and complete those tests.
Beyond the technological aspect, however, is the underlying fact that local higher ed institutions can prove extremely valuable partners for K-12 schools and districts on a number of fronts. As demonstrated by the Port Richmond Partnership Leadership Academy, which won the 2017 Dive Award Winner for Partnership of the Year, these partnerships can also play a significant role in preparing students who might not otherwise see postsecondary education as a possibility for the pursuit of a degree, on top of helping districts find subject matter experts to teach courses they may not otherwise have the available expertise to offer.