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Studywiz Spark Survey: Parents Demand More from Technology in Schools, Want to Get Involved in Their Children's School Life
Sep 02, 2008 (08:09 AM EDT)

MENLO PARK, Calif., Sept. 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Studywiz Spark, the first and only Dynamic LearnSpace for K-12 education, today announced the results of an independent, nationwide parent survey regarding online access, mobility, gaming and safety within the school environment. A sample of 325 parents of school-aged children was surveyed. The results show that 92% of parents surveyed say that they would like to have online access to the same content and curricula distributed to their children, but only 49% report that their schools provide such access.

78% say they are not satisfied with the use of technology in their school, reporting either that more computers are needed, or that more should be done with what schools have. 75% are comfortable with the use of multimedia tools (Web 2.0 tools, such as YouTube videos, audio clips and web links) within the classroom, and this number increases to 95% when multimedia tools are integrated into lesson plans in a teacher-monitored, safe environment. A majority, 59%, see a benefit in having access to their children's schoolwork through mobile devices.

"The results show that parents are overwhelmingly receptive to having online access to their children's schoolwork, most often referencing benefits like emailing teachers, seeing assignments and grades and being able to easily access missed work due to absences. This indicates that, through technology, schools should have little trouble meeting federal and state mandates to improve parental involvement," said Bob Longo, Executive Vice President, Studywiz Spark. "In fact, parents are demanding new online tools that allow them to review student work in progress and proactively interact with students and teachers."

"The Studywiz Spark survey shows that when it comes to technology, parents want innovations for their children, but that schools need to take safe and secure environments seriously," said Katia Petersen, PhD, author, Safe and Caring Schools. "A controlled environment allows teachers to present the best in multimedia to students, without sending them out into an uncontrolled, unsupervised Internet."

The findings in a nutshell:

-- 92% of parents want online access to their children's schoolwork, but only 49% actually receive it.

-- The most important perceived benefits to parents of online access are access to missed work assignments and the ability for parents to be more involved.

-- Of those who do not have online access to their children's schoolwork, only 23% think they would log on to view it every day if they could. Of those who have online access, only 9% log on to view their children's schoolwork every day. This indicates minimal need for concern about hovering or "helicoptering" parents.

-- Of those who have online access, 65% of respondents log on at least once per week.

-- 75% of respondents report comfort with multimedia tools, but this percentage increases to 95% given an environment that is safe and teacher-monitored.

-- 78% believe that more should be done with the technology in the school, either reporting that more computers are needed (33%), more should be done with what the schools already have (33%) or a move should be made beyond computers to a wider range of technologies (16%).

-- 59% of parents believe that an ability to access their children's schoolwork through their mobile devices would be beneficial.

-- 96% support the use of games provided they are educational. 53% show particularly high enthusiasm, stating either that games should be a part of schoolwork, or that students learn more from games than regular schoolwork.

A report of full survey results is available by request. The survey was a blind sample of 325 parents, who have at least one child in K-12, and was conducted during July 2008. The internet survey, sponsored by Studywiz Spark and independently managed by Zoomerang, has a margin of error of 5% with a confidence interval of 94%.

Through its multimedia and technological capabilities, Studywiz Spark provides a host of benefits for the 21st Century learning environment, including: personalized learning, content management, backup for teacher and student-generated files, increased interaction and collaboration and the ability to manage content and integrate multimedia applications that engage students most, like videos, web links and audio clips. The Dynamic LearnSpace is helping schools to re-engage their teachers, students and parents by allowing them to participate in an interactive learning environment and providing access to educational content at all times.

About Studywiz Spark

Studywiz Spark is the first and only Dynamic LearnSpace for K-12 education, providing an enriched learning environment for students. Studywiz Spark offers a safe, personalized space for learning that engages students, teachers and parents and allows administrators to secure a return on their investments in technology and learning. Studywiz Spark gives teachers a unique tool for elevating instruction through educational content collection, organization and interactivity; collaborative and personalized learning; real-time feedback and assessment. Studywiz Spark supports parental participation in learning and affords access to all users safely and easily through the Internet. For more information on Studywiz Spark, visit .

Etech Group was founded in 1993 and specializes in developing online learning technology for educational environments. Etech Group provides best-of-breed applications and development services that promote collaboration and enhance outcome-focused learning.

CONTACT: Jennifer Bannan, +1-412-580-3675,, or ShannonRoulston, +1-917-675-0628, , both for Studywiz Spark

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