Leadership Prep School computer

Group photo from the dedication ceremony (from left to right): William Hall (Computers for the Blind), Mark Langford (Computers for the Blind Board), Zain Ali (University of North Texas, New College), Austin Hall (Computers for the Blind), Stacy Alton (LPS Superintendent), Sheacy Thompson (LPS Director of PR), Joshua Futrell (ComHome Technology Solutions, CEO), Jenifer Florence (RBFCU); and Tony Curtis (LPS Computers Science Students).

Leadership Prep School (LPS) computer science students hosted a special presentation to donate computers they built from parts to Computers for the Blind on Tuesday at Leadership Prep School in Frisco. This project demonstrates a culmination of the three models that serves as the foundation of education at LPS: Leadership; computer-immersion; and project-based learning.

“Global citizenship is important to the culture of Leadership Prep School,” said LPS Superintendent Stacy Alton. “We believe that every child has the potential to be a leader, and encouraging participation in learning-based service projects helps our students apply the knowledge they acquire while cultivating their inner leadership skills.”

Computers for the Blind is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization devoted to providing computers to persons who are blind or visually impaired so that each person who receives a computer may experience the information age in a positive and productive manner. Specifically, the organization wants to empower the individuals they serve to independently manage their personal affairs, provide access to communication with others, offer a learning environment where information is just a click away, and open doors to employment opportunities by developing knowledge, skills, and marketable abilities.

“Being able to use a computer allows blind and visually impaired people to live more independent lives by participating in activities many of us take for granted, such as printing checks, tracking account balances, sending and receiving emails, organizing daily activities on a calendar and sharing it with others, browsing social media sites, updating a shopping list, etc. These activities represent access to information and communication in ways not possible previously for the blind and visually impaired,” said Mark Langford, board member for Computers for the Blind.

The students held a garage sale at the beginning of the school year to raise money to purchase computer parts. Additionally, Frisco-based COMHOME Technology Solutions donated a significant number of parts in support of this project. Under the guidance of their teacher, Tony Curtis, the students spent several months building computers and learning about the importance of each part and its significance to this project. Altogether, 60 students in grades eight through 11 taking one of three Principles of Information Technology classes offered at LPS worked to build 15 computers to donate – a process that nearly took the entire 2018-2019 school year to accomplish.

“This example of project-based learning demonstrates the learning that takes place beyond textbooks, rote memorization, and testing. Our students participate in active learning with real work and real-world implications,” Curtis said.

For information about Computers for the Blind, visit computersfortheblind.org.

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