New technology lab at Wheatley Community School to help close gaps in tech knowledge and access on East Side

Media Advisory

What:         New technology lab at Wheatley Community School to help close gaps in tech knowledge and access on East Side

When:       Wednesday (May 25), 9:45 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.

Where:      Wheatley Community School, 415 Gabriel St.
Entrance at the back of Wheatley Middle School

East Side residents who may not have a home Internet connection now will have a new option for accessing online information with the opening of a technology lab at Wheatley Community School, a one-stop center that brings together free resources aimed at strengthening and empowering the community.

The school will host a grand-opening ceremony with SAISD District 2 Trustee James Howard among those providing opening comments. The brief comments will be followed by a ribbon-cutting in the new technology lab, which will be open for use Monday through Friday, between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m.

Thanks to a sponsorship by Google Fiber, this new community space will include 30 Dell Chromebooks loaded with the Google Chrome education management systems, as well as work stations, tables and a lounge area that encourages collaboration. The computers will be connected to the Internet via a standard, high-speed connection.

The lab will help close the gaps in technology access and knowledge that persist in neighborhoods surrounding Wheatley Community School, which

is located on the campus of Wheatley Middle School, by providing a

venue for technology literacy classes. Community members and parents also may use the lab to search for jobs, create resumes, print documents and, for students, to engage in academic enrichment activities outside of school hours, among other uses.

Google Fiber selected Wheatley Community School for this sponsorship because of its innovative approach to education and collaborative efforts across local entities and organizations.

The full-service community school, which opened in spring 2015, works to ensure individual and family success through academic enrichment and improvement, job training, adult education and increased accessibility to community resources and services.

The school is supported by federal funding and is the result of ongoing collaboration between the City of San Antonio, the San Antonio Housing Authority, United Way and Trinity University, as the research partner. While it is open to all community members, the community school’s target service areas are the East Side neighborhoods of Dignowity Hill, Harvard Place/Eastlawn, Jefferson Heights and Government Hill – known as the EastPoint area.

Wheatley Community School currently offers:

·         Utility assistance programs through CPS Energy and San Antonio Water System, which have on-site representatives each week.

·         Evening and weekend family fitness activities through Eastside Fit.

·         Youth leadership and life skills for Wheatley Middle School students through a weekly class by Family Service Association.

·         Monthly farmer’s market that includes cooking demonstrations and nutritional education.

·         Adult ESL and GED evening classes, with free childcare. 

·         I-Best program to prepare those without a GED to enter career training programs.

·         Parenting classes through Healthy Futures of Texas.

·         Banking via a branch of the Select Federal Credit Union.

·         Adult case management services, with referrals to appropriate community organizations for assistance and educational training.

·         Summer academic enrichment camp for middle school students and Kinder Camp for incoming kindergarten students.

A digital music production lab is expected to open in the fall, and the community school currently is working with Methodist United Healthcare Ministries on a partnership to offer on-site health education, health promotion and facilitation-of-resources services.

About Google Fiber

Google Fiber is an Internet and TV service that provides Internet speeds up to one gigabit per second − that’s 1,000 Megabits per second, compared to the average Internet speed in America today of 14.2 Mbps −along with hundreds of HD TV channels.

 

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