Editor Emeritus - Ed Wilkinson

DeSales Helps Students Learn in New Ways

DeSales CEO Art Dignam
DeSales CEO Art Dignam with Arthur Gange, left, and Anthony Comastro. (Photo by Ed Wilkinson)

Students at St. Joseph the Worker School in Windsor Terrace now work in a new media lab, courtesy of the DeSales Media Group, parent company of The Tablet and NET-TV.

Principal Robert DiNardo is so grateful that he wants everyone to know where the new room came from. So, he held a special ceremony on Feb. 12 to unveil a plaque that will hang outside the former classroom. It reads:

“With gratitude for your generosity and support, We dedicate this technology room to DeSales media group, We thank you for your time and effort, St. Joseph the Worker Catholic Academy.”

During the dedication ceremony, the principal along with the school’s vice-president, Christopher Artz, thanked DeSales for its contribution, enabling the school to use funds that would have been earmarked for technology for other necessary projects in the school. Members of the board, Janet Criscuoli, treasurer, and Sister  Elizabeth Kelly, secretary, also attended.

DeSales CEO, Art Dignam, accepted the plaque from two members of the Student Council, Arthur Gange and Anthony Comastro. In his remarks, Dignam said that DeSales Media is aware of the many new ways in which to communicate the Gospel message. The new media lab is a tool to be used to better communicate in today’s digital age.

St. Joseph the Worker technology grant
A St. Joseph the Worker student with one of the school’s new laptops. ((Photo by Ed Wilkinson))

St. Joseph the Worker is located in the former Holy Name School that has been consolidated with Immaculate Heart of Mary School. It is one of four schools that received an IT grant from DeSales for the 2014 school year.

The grant contained funding for an overhaul of the IT infrastructure in the school, specifically installing a new managed wireless network throughout the building.

“With the implementation of tablets and laptops for teachers and students, it is important that these mobile devices can connect wirelessly,” explained Gina Krainchich, who coordinates educational services to the schools for DeSales.

“While this was the most technical part of the project, the most visible and exciting aspect was to upgrade the computer lab that was once filled with static rows of desktop computers.”

The heart of the media room is 35 Lenovo laptops, each with appropriate Microsoft software packages. A mobile charging cart was provided to easily enable charging and securing storage. The room is designed with mobile desks that can be easily reconfigured for group instruction or small-group collaboration. Teachers conduct their lessons from a SMARTBoard in the front of the lab.

DeSales Media with St. Joseph the Worker board
Members of the DeSales Media Group receive the dedication plaque from Robert DiNardo, principal, and board members of the school. The plaque will hang outside the new computer room. (Photo by Ed Wilkinson)

“The great thing about educational technology today is that it easily fosters differentiation of student learning styles and abilities. The media room has endless possibilities,” points out Krainchich.

DeSales has been offering technology grants to schools since 2011. The Diocese’s media company assumes responsibility for design and management. To date, 20 school and academies have taken advantage of the program.

In addition to St. Joseph the Worker, full media labs also have been installed at Holy Family, Fresh Meadows; Queen of the Rosary Academy, Williamsburg; and Cathedral Prep, Elmhurst.