Press Release Date:  Monday, September 24, 2007  
Contact Information:  Heather Gate

Richmond, Ky. – Today, a ceremony was held at Eastern Kentucky University’s Model Laboratory School celebrating the donation of 20 computers by American Electric Power (AEP) Foundation. The computers were donated through ConnectKentucky’s No Child Left Offline (NCLO) program, an innovative initiative designed to help close the digital divide among Kentucky’s youth.

According to Tim Mosher, president and COO of AEP's Kentucky Power Operating Unit, the computers will provide educational and advancement opportunities for many students at the Model School for years to come. "It's good to play a part in advancing educational opportunity in the Commonwealth. We have no doubt that the investment made in the computers will pay off handsomely for these students and Kentucky as a whole. The Foundation and Kentucky Power sees this as nothing less than an opportunity to enrich our children and enhance our futures." The AEP Foundation has already helped NCLO distribute nearly 500 computers to children and families in eastern Kentucky.

Situated on EKU’s campus, the Model Laboratory School was created to offer quality education by modeling best practices while providing field experiences for pre-service teachers and other professionals in related fields. Model Lab serves as the primary field site for the training of pre-service teachers at EKU’s College of Education, many of whom come from some of the poorest counties in eastern Kentucky, and upon graduating often go back home to their eastern Kentucky hometowns to teach. The program provides a valuable setting for research, special education and curriculum development for eastern Kentucky’s pre-service teachers. In addition to functioning as an important hub for pre-service teacher training, the school also serves a high volume of special needs students.   

“As Kentucky’s only laboratory school, we are very appreciative to American Electric Power for its contribution in support of Model Laboratory High School students and Eastern Kentucky University pre-service teachers who train at our school,” said James Dantic Model Lab principal. “This technical support will facilitate state of the art learning in not only Model classrooms, but also those classrooms across our region where EKU College of Education graduates serve as teachers. We thank American Electric Power as well as ConnectKentucky, Sen. Worley and Rep. Moberly for their support of Kentucky education and students.”

"There is a direct correlation between the number of computers in the classroom and student success," said Sen. Ed Worley (D), Richmond. "This is a great program that will continue to move Kentucky in the right direction."

“This generous gift will allow Model’s students to develop essential skills for using the latest technology and to explore a wider world of ideas,” said Rep. Harry Moberly (D), House District 81.

No Child Left Offline, a project of ConnectKentucky, the non-profit organization carrying out Kentucky’s Prescription for Innovation, is the most innovative and comprehensive initiative of its kind undertaken by any state as it is intended to help students and their families overcome the obstacles associated with the digital divide. No Child Left Offline also works with organizations that serve children by assisting to implement technologies that enhance their lives. Recognizing the Model Lab as an important training ground for teachers from eastern Kentucky, No Child Left Offline and the AEP Foundation are helping to address a classroom need for special education computers at Model Lab.

“No Child Left Offline continues to evolve into a multi-faceted program designed to bring greater technological resources to those children who can benefit most from having enhanced access to it,” said Andrew V. McNeill, VP, program development, ConnectKentucky. “This contribution by the American Electric Power Foundation will provide a lasting benefit to the students of Model Lab School and those students of EKU’s College of Education – many of whom are from the counties served by Kentucky Power.”

"Governor Fletcher's Prescription for Innovation initiative has been a huge success – bringing the Commonwealth to the national forefront as a leader in broadband (high-speed Internet) deployment and technology advancement," said Robbie Rudolph, Secretary of the Governor's Executive Cabinet. "The No Child Left Offline program is working to make certain Kentuckians have the opportunity to enjoy the benefits associated with living in a state with unprecedented high-speed Internet availability."

Organizations interested in supporting No Child Left Offline can submit requests to

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About ConnectKentucky: ConnectKentucky connects people to technology in world-altering ways: improving the lives of the formerly disconnected; renewing hope for previously withering rural communities; driving increases in the number of tech-intensive companies and jobs; and nurturing an environment for lifetime learning, improved healthcare, and superior quality of life. ConnectKentucky develops and implements effective strategies for technology deployment, use and literacy in Kentucky, creating both the forum and the incentive for interaction among a variety of people and entities that would not otherwise unite behind common goals and a shared vision.  This level of teamwork is ensuring Kentucky remains the place of choice to work, live, and raise a family.

About No Child Left Offline:  No Child Left Offline is an innovative project that brings together public and private partners to help Kentuckians join the Information Age and overcome the obstacles associated with the digital divide.