Schools partnership Apple of firm’s eye

Schools across Cork have benefited from a partnership with Apple, one of the city’s largest employers, and have seen students develop their technical skills at a young age.

In the Apple Education Program, Apple assigns a Senior Manager to sponsor each participating school.

Sponsors continue to work with schools to ensure that Apple provides the best possible support to students.

Sponsors collect feedback from schools and use it to identify areas for future collaboration.

Initiatives Apple is running in these schools include donating iPads. Technical education where an Apple Distinguished Educator visits schools weekly to provide training for teachers. Enhancing student engagement through coding and creativity.

Apple also offers exit certificate support for multilingual employees to provide additional language support to students at the schools the company has partnered with. Apple also hosts career events at schools and provides career guidance to help students find opportunities and identify areas of interest.

Commenting on how the program has helped his students, said Phil O’Flynn, Principal of Terence MacSwiney College in Knocknaheeny. As part of the collaboration, Apple volunteers began working with teachers in schools to help implement Everyone Can Code and Everyone Can Create curricula aimed at increasing student engagement through coding and creativity.

“In addition, Apple has provided the necessary funding and technology to enable students to have hands-on learning experiences. This partnership has provided positive momentum for Terence MacSwiney School. I was exposed to the latest technology, creativity, and positive role models from Apple staff.”

Ms O’Flynn said school management and staff have witnessed the impact first-hand and have many anecdotes of student success.

“A recent example of students using high-level technology skills for a greater cause is the creation of a food app by a food fund group. are distributing.

“We are very proud of this initiative and the nature of our students who combine technical skills with work ethic. We also contribute to improving the school environment.

“A particular aesthetic contribution by Apple staff was the creation of a mural in the outdoor area, which helped brighten that area and create a child-friendly and positive space,” she said. .

Adrian Gibbs, principal of North Presentation Secondary School in Farranree, said Apple has been working with the school for the past three years and that students have benefited greatly.

“They now offer 35 iPads and accessories for students and teachers. These are primarily used by transitional students who have greatly benefited from their three years of use.

“Their digital skills have improved significantly during this time. We also use them in Years 1, 2 and 3 to help them build their skills for the transition year and the future.

“We are fortunate to have the support of Apple Distinguished Educator Miriam Walsh and former North Press student Lorraine O’Keeffe of Apple.”

Gibbs said Apple volunteers will help digitize the school’s photo archive next year in preparation for co-education in September 2023.

We also look forward to visiting Apple in 2023 as part of the TY program. ”

Kevin Byrne, teacher at Montenotte’s Scoil Bernadette, said: echo In 2019, Apple contacted me to work with transitional students.

“This meant receiving 24 top-of-the-line student iPads and 6 staff iPads. Even better, regularly updated with the latest models. We sent an iMac to every class as a separate donation.

“At this point, I had the pleasure of meeting Miriam Walsh, a prominent Apple educator who trained several staff members.

“Last year and this year, we have benefited greatly from our investments in charging cabinets, two Beats Pill speakers, Apple TV, Apple Pencil, iPad covers, several mini keyboards, and more.

“We have worked to live up to Apple’s overarching philosophy that anyone can code and anyone can create. All student work is stored on Minicac. Each student has their own login. Every student in our school uses iPads to do research, take photos, make videos, create podcasts, present work, write stories, compose music, document science experiments, and anything else you can think of. You can do. .

“They can draw, edit photos, control robots, program characters, and even fly school drones using iPads.

“We record school plays and send videos and photos to parents using social media seamlessly via iPad.

“Features like Airdrop and screen sharing allow students to collaborate and present directly to their peers.”

Byrne said iPads are also being used for environmental and sustainable purposes, with the school’s Green School team using QR codes, online quizzes, and recording energy use via iPads.

“We have found the iPad to be a comprehensive device that allows students to participate at their own pace and in their own learning style. , the application tasks of information technology have become easier this year.”

Byrne explained that the project was “extremely important” to the students, and said that without Apple’s investment and generosity, the school would not have risked the amount of money needed to set it up. I got

“It has been an adventure into the unknown, but it has been a huge success for us. In the future, if our particular cohort of students can find out that they have a future in a company like Apple, That is wonderful.

Scoil Bernadette student Oisin O’hAolain honed his technical and presentation skills through his work at Apple.

“I loved the coding and book creator apps and everything I learned from Miriam, the Apple Distinguished Educator I teach every Wednesday. With slideshows and multimedia, we can now bring news to life in a comprehensive way, not just typing, but sound, video and drawing,” he said.

Caoimhe Corcoran said he found the coding section the most interesting because it was “easy to learn.”

“I also enjoyed driving the Sphero Bolt robot. You can drive it and teach it to draw shapes like hearts and squares.”

Rory O’Donovan loves the creative aspect of the program, allowing him to create his own book using photos from his home farm, horseback riding videos, and school friends, making him a real author.

Ava Freeman said she also enjoyed creating her own book using photos taken at home and at school. Cian Richardson, meanwhile, learned how to drive a robot in her classroom and used it in geography, she said.

Adam O’Keeffe loves using the Sketch School application and said it was “a lot of fun.”

“I took a lot of great pictures in class. Mirman showed me how to use the application. It was great fun.”

Commenting on the impact the program has had on local schools, said Cathy Kearney, Apple’s vice president of Europe, Middle East, India and Africa.

“We are committed to supporting local schools here in Cork and providing young people with the tools they need to develop the skills essential to the jobs of today and tomorrow.”

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