Iowa District to Use $54K Google Grant for VR Hardware
Council Bluffs Community School District (CBCSD) in Council Bluffs, IA has received a $54,500 grant from Google’s Charitable Giving Fund of the Tides Foundation. With the funding, the district will purchase 28 kits (each with 15 headsets) that cost about $4,500 per kit, according to a report from the Omaha World-Herald and other sources. The hardware will enable teachers to incorporate VR into their curriculum, like VR tours on Google Expeditions, Alchemy VR, Discovery VR, zSpace and other platforms.
The district ran a pilot program with VR headsets earlier this year and now will expand the program to other schools with the new grant. The objective, according to CBCSD Chief Technology Officer Dave Fringer, is to engage students in learning opportunities that would otherwise not be possible without the technology.
“We can’t take actual field trips to the Taj Mahal, the Great Wall of China, the Colosseum of Rome, Chichén-Itzá, Petra, Rio de Janeiro or Machu Picchu,” Fringer told the Omaha World-Herald, “however, that won’t prevent our students from seeing these magnificent sights in three dimensions."