Mississippi goes to AOL@School
- By Matt Caterinicchia
- Jul 23, 2002
Mississippi has become the seventh state to partner with America Online
Inc. to offer students with an online learning tool for kindergarten through
12th grade, Gov. Ronnie Musgrove announced July 17.
AOL@School, a free online service, offers six age-appropriate learning
portals featuring educational content, communications features and special
safety tools to keep minors from accessing inappropriate material on the
Web. Additionally, the service enables teachers to offer students communication
features such as e-mail and instant messaging at their discretion.
Free software is being sent to all public schools in Mississippi that
will include AOL@School's state focus feature — local information selected
by state education officials. Furthermore, the feature offers states live
content windows in each of the AOL@School's six learning portals, which
are programmed to spotlight information targeted for different age groups.
All U.S. states are being offered the opportunity to take part by providing
state focus content.
In Mississippi, teachers and administrators will now have online access
to tailored information, such as state standards, staff development initiatives,
state education news and teacher certification facts.
Niki Marshall, an AOL spokeswoman, said that the site and software were
redesigned in March based on user feedback. "We decided to enhance the site
with better graphics," she said. "We also instituted a graphics search for
younger kids just in case they can't spell a difficult word."
Mississippi students will begin using the program when schools start
The governors of six states — Virginia, Florida, Maryland, Pennsylvania,
Colorado and Georgia — have endorsed AOL@School, and the program is being
used in public and private schools across the country, Marshall said.