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Virginia Department of Education Receives $50,000 Grant From Verizon to Expand Teachersí Professional Development Opportunities


Grant Will Train Teachers on Use Of Verizonís Educational Resources

RICHMOND, Va. - The Verizon Foundation has awarded a $50,000 grant to the Virginia Department of Education to continue to raise teachersí awareness of the free, state-of-the-art educational resources available on and to train teachers to use those resources.

With the grant, the Verizon Foundation has now invested nearly $104,000 with the Department of Education to provide innovative online resources and professional development for Virginia teachers. is the Verizon Foundationís free, comprehensive Web site containing more than 55,000 educational resources, including standards-based, grade-specific, K-12 lesson plans, online educational games, videos and other materials provided in partnership with many of the nationís leading educational organizations.

Verizonís offers elementary through high school teachers resources across eight academic disciplines - from science to English to mathematics - to improve student achievement. is designed to help teachers gain access quickly to high-quality online resources.

ďCommunity partners such as the Verizon Foundation provide resources that enhance instruction and increase learning,Ē said Virginia Superintendent of Public Instruction Patricia I. Wright. ďVerizonís commitment to supporting teachers through is especially appreciated at a time when state and local governments are hard-pressed to provide additional resources.Ē

In addition to providing standards-based resources from the nationís leading educational organizations, also offers a free, robust professional-development program for teachers and trainers.

Verizonís grant will be used to:

* Provide professional development opportunities to classroom teachers statewide through on-site and online training, using expert Thinkfinity Certified Trainers from around Virginia.

* Provide information to educators and students about resources that are aligned to state standards and available through the Web site.

* Raise awareness to educators statewide of resources and professional development opportunities.

* Develop a model Thinkfinity-infused school in Stafford County where teachers are trained to integrate Thinkfinity resources into their classrooms to model how these resources can support 21st century skills.

Robert Woltz Jr., president of Verizon Virginia, said, ďAny companyís corporate social responsibility should include a commitment to education, and Verizon shares this commitment with the commonwealth of Virginia. The Verizon grant will give our teachers the tools they need to use this incredible online portal, which is essentially an educatorsí toolkit with all kinds of fun lessons and interactive programs for students - all of which complement Virginia Standards of Learning objectives.Ē

Content for Thinkfinity is provided through a partnership between the Verizon Foundation and 11 of the nationís leading organizations in the fields of education and literacy: the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the International Reading Association, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, National Center for Family Literacy, National Council on Economic Education, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Council of Teachers of English, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, National Geographic Society, ProLiteracy and the Smithsonianís National Museum of American History.

The Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications, supports the advancement of literacy and K-12 education through its free educational Web site,, and fosters awareness and prevention of domestic violence. In 2008, the Verizon Foundation awarded more than $68 million in grants to nonprofit agencies in the U.S. and abroad. It also matched the charitable donations of Verizon employees and retirees, resulting in an additional $26 million in combined contributions to nonprofits. Through Verizon Volunteers, one of the nationís largest employee volunteer programs, Verizon employees and retirees have volunteered more than 3 million hours of community service since 2000. For more information on the foundation, visit

About the Virginia Department of Education
The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) provides supervisory, administrative and technical support for the commonwealthís 1,860 public schools. The superintendent of public instruction is appointed by the governor and confirmed by the state legislature and serves as the executive officer of the department. VDOE supports local school divisions and schools in achieving the commonwealthís goals for increasing student learning and academic achievement. For more information, visit

About Verizon
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a leader in delivering broadband and other wireline and wireless communication innovations to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates Americaís most reliable wireless network, serving more than 80 million customers nationwide. Verizonís Wireline operations include Verizon Business, which delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world, and Verizon Telecom, which brings customers the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services over the nationís most advanced fiber-optic network. A Dow 30 company, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of nearly 224,000 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of more than $97 billion. For more information, visit


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