LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and DIRECTV Chairman, President and CEO, Mike White, today announced a $200K investment in the Mayor's Partnership for LA Schools' Blended Learning1 initiative to support STEM education (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) and further the implementation of ST Math, an online math learning program. The announcement coincides with Digital Learning Day, a national campaign that shines a spotlight on successful instructional practice and effective use of technology in the classroom.
"Los Angeles students have no better partner than DIRECTV," said Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. "Mike White and everyone at DIRECTV have been with the Partnership for LA Schools from the beginning, generously contributing both resources and time. Today, they continue that commitment with this generous donation bringing the latest in math learning technology to nearly 3,000 Partnership students."
The announcement fittingly took place in Watts at Ritter Elementary, which has achieved the fastest growth in math scores on state tests among all Partnership elementary schools since piloting ST Math and was recently named "School of the Year" by Mind Research, the developers of ST Math, for their consistent progress in math.
"DIRECTV is proud to invest in this innovative approach to math learning and instruction as part of our commitment to supporting K-12 schools and STEM education," said Mike White, chairman, president and CEO of DIRECTV. "Through our continued association with the Partnership for LA Schools, our goal is to provide the tools and support students need to be successful and help them develop the skills that will become the foundation for their future."
DIRECTV's investment will fund the implementation of ST Math, as well as a multi-tiered incentive program designed to foster a love of math in elementary and middle school students; a critical period for students where mastering math standards and developing a passion for math is vital.
Incentives, including iPad Minis and free DIRECTV service for a year, will be awarded to teachers and parents whose students demonstrate the greatest math achievement using ST Math. For students, the incentive program will culminate in an end-of-year grand prize featuring an exclusive event for one middle school and one elementary school with the highest ST Math usage.
"DIRECTV's investment in our Blended Learning initiative is a testament to our talented students and teachers who have made it a success," said Partnership for LA Schools CEO, Marshall Tuck. "We applaud DIRECTV for their ongoing commitment and support of the Partnership and our landmark Blended Learning initiative, which we launched last year and today is one of the largest efforts at scale among inner-city public schools in the country."
The Partnership's Blended Learning strategy uses online learning programs to support teachers who need to reach students of varying levels within the same classroom. Through this approach, the Partnership seeks to improve student outcomes in Math, English and in the California High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE) through the use of various software programs including ST Math.
After one year of using ST Math in elementary schools, the Partnership achieved a six percent spike in math scores on 2011-12 state tests compared to a flat average by the Los Angeles Unified School District.
Thanks to funders like DIRECTV, the Partnership has raised over $3.6 million to purchase hardware, software and teacher training to expand the program. Now in its second year, the Partnership's Blended Learning program impacts more than two thirds of its 16,000 students.
DIRECTV (NASDAQ: DTV) is one of the world's leading providers of digital television entertainment services delivering a premium video experience through state-of-the-art technology, unmatched programming and industry leading customer service to more than 35 million customers in the U.S. and Latin America. In the U.S., DIRECTV offers its over 20 million customers access to more than 185 HD channels and Dolby-Digital® 5.1 theater-quality sound, access to exclusive sports programming such as NFL SUNDAY TICKET™, Emmy- award winning technology and higher customer satisfaction than the leading cable companies for 11 years running. DIRECTV Latin America, through its subsidiaries and affiliated companies in Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Venezuela, Colombia, and other Latin American countries, leads the pay TV category in technology, programming and service, delivering an unrivaled digital television experience to more than 15 million customers. DIRECTV sports and entertainment properties include three Regional Sports Networks (Northwest, Rocky Mountain and Pittsburgh) as well as a 42 percent interest in Game Show Network. For the most up-to-date information on DIRECTV, please visit www.directv.com. For more information about Corporate Citizenship at DIRECTV, please visit www.directv.com/CorporateCitizenship.
About the Partnership:
The Partnership for Los Angeles Schools strives to uplift children in the city's poorest communities by transforming their local public school into a safe and secure place of opportunity, achievement and discovery. In terms of students served, the Partnership is one of the largest school turnaround organizations in the nation, providing a range of supports to its nearly 16,000 students. Founded in 2007 as the cornerstone of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's strategy to improve education in Los Angeles, the Partnership is a unique collaboration between the City of Los Angeles and the Los Angeles Unified School District to turn around LA's lowest performing schools and to create a model for doing so district wide. The Partnership today manages 22 schools with approximately 1,300 school-site employees. The Partnership is a 501(c) 3 non-profit education management organization with nearly 40 full-time employees. For more information, go towww.PartnershipLA.org.
1 Blended learning combines face-to-face classroom instruction with computer-mediated activities