LEARN North Carolina (the Learners' and Educators' Assistance and Resource Network) is a partnership of the public schools of North Carolina, the North Carolina community colleges, the University of North Carolina system, and private industry. These partners are working together to use the Internet to deliver professional development opportunities and learning resources that increase student achievement, enhance teacher proficiencies, and foster community participation in the educational process.
Specifically, the LEARN NC network is creating a set of World Wide Web-based services that will be accessible to every school in the state and will provide educators with an online forum through which a teaching community is forming to improve learning in every classroom. Teachers throughout North Carolina will be able to hold daily discussions about general or specific parts of the school curriculum, access high-quality lesson plans and other resources, contribute their own tested teaching strategies, and collaborate to develop new resources.
LEARN NC is based in the School of Education at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where both program administration and resource development activities take place. Currently, all 117 of North Carolina's public school systems and all of the state's Catholic schools, charter schools, and human resources schools are participating in LEARN NC.
One essential component of LEARN NC is databases of resources produced by the universities and state research centers that teachers and students can access online, incorporate into classroom and online learning activities, and manipulate locally or collaboratively with other schools. These include, to name a few examples, databases of stellar images, works of art, visual and audio history, and anthropology.
Server class machines provided by Intel are being used in the School of Education and the Institute for Academic Technology, which are the program development units on the UNC-CH campus. These servers will support users of LEARN NC databases statewide. Additional servers are being placed in four pilot schools.
Some desktop computers are being used to create labs in the Chatham and Johnston public school systems; others are being placed with teachers in the pilot schools. This assignment of Intel-provided equipment will permit conversion and distribution of databases into the LEARN NC Domino/Notes environment and transport to and manipulation by local public school teachers to test the resources and develop lesson plans for statewide distribution.
For additional information, please see the LEARN NC web site.