GenYESGeneration Youth and Educators Succeeding
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GenYES recommends that student-staffed help desks be located in the library, media center or other common area.
"Tons of devices are coming into schools and they need tech support," says Dennis Harper, founder and CEO of GenYES. "The standard for IT support is one IT person for every 20 devices.
Attendance has improved and there have been no behavioral problems after only one trimester of the GenYES program.
They then implement the component of GenYES that will include students in helping achieve the goal, gradually building on that success to expand the program.
"We first started as a club after school" with seven kids, says Dabble Kovesdy, a media specialist and GenYES adviser at Shadow Mountain High School in Phoenix.
Today, 65 GenYES students contribute to the culture of technology at Shadow Mountain, providing support for teachers and troubleshooting hardware problems.
In the 10 years that GenYES has been in place in Graham County, the students' role in the district's tech support infrastructure has become essential.
"The students have become additional staff for us," he says, noting that he uses as tech aides former GenYES members who are now high school seniors.
At Paradise Valley Unified School District in Phoenix, which employs GenYES at all levels of K-12, project-based technology integration is the focus of the program.
GenYes President Sylvia Martinez says that boosting the use of technology in classrooms to keep pace with society has students tackling a problem that is just as significant as cleaning up a marsh or engaging in other service learning activities.
A thriving GenYES presence exists at the San Juan Unified School District in Carmichael, Calif.
A key component of GenYES is the pairing of students and teachers to find ways to creatively integrate technology programs into the curriculum.