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Intel Honors Sojourner Elementary School in Oregon as ’Star Innovator’ at Schools of Distinction Awards


Oregon School Honored for Innovative and Rigorous Mathematics Program

Intel Corporation today named Sojourner Elementary School of Milwaukie, Ore., as the “Star Innovator” among six winners of the 2008 Intel Schools of Distinction Awards.

Intel sponsors the awards to honor schools for implementing innovative math and science programs and serving as models for other schools. The Intel Foundation and sponsoring companies will distribute to this year’s winning schools a total of more than $1 million in cash, products and services.

“Intel Schools of Distinction are places where students, teachers and the entire school community live and breathe educational excellence,” said Intel Chairman Craig Barrett. “Coupling that focus with 21st century skills – communication, collaboration, and critical thinking – fosters the innovation we need far more of in the U.S.”

Delay Middle School in Lewisville, Texas and Sabino High School in Tucson, Ariz. joined Sojourner in winning 2008 Schools of Distinction awards for mathematics excellence in their respective levels. Awards for science excellence at the elementary, middle school and high school levels, respectively, went to Laguna Elementary School in Scottsdale, Ariz., Key Peninsula Middle School in Lakebay, Wash. and Townsend Harris High School in Flushing, N.Y.

Each of the six winning schools, which were honored today at a gala in Washington, D.C., receive a $10,000 cash grant from the Intel Foundation and an award package that includes curriculum materials, professional development resources, hardware and software valued at more than $160,000. As Star Innovator, Sojourner receives additional cash, products and services, including a $15,000 grant from the Intel Foundation.

The Making of a Star Innovator in Mathematics Education

Mathematics achievement at Sojourner has steadily improved over the past 4 years, according to Oregon State Assessment data. Sojourner utilizes a “team teaching” approach, which allows content specialization. At each level, at least one teacher completes additional coursework and professional development in mathematics. This results in specialized content and academic knowledge in mathematics.

Computers are equipped with the software necessary to complete the computer-based units from the school’s math curriculum, and teachers are trained to implement these units.

Newsletters produced at each level inform parents as to the specific content in class so that parents can provide appropriate support. All families have math manipulative “kits” at home so that students can continue to develop ideas at the conceptual level. Families also have access to the district Web site, where the online Student Learning Center provides valuable resources for practice activities at a variety of levels.

Six highly trained math teachers work at Sojourner. One teacher has received both the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching and the Milken Educator Award.

For more information on the Intel Schools of Distinction Awards and to view the complete list of winners, visit

Intel’s sponsorship of the Schools of Distinction Awards is part of the Intel® Education Initiative, a sustained public-private partnership with governments in more than 50 countries. Through this $100 million a year initiative, Intel delivers programs that improve the effective use of technology to enhance 21st century skills, and encourages excellence in mathematics, science and engineering. For more information, visit

In addition to Intel, award sponsors include BrainWare, CTL, Dell, DyKnow, eInstruction, Futurekids, Inspiration Software, Microsoft, PASCO scientific, Scantron, SMART, Spectrum K12 and Trillion.


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