Meritor Inc. recently announced a $100,000 contribution to The Henry Ford’s Innovation Education Incubator to launch a pilot program that brings digital education resources into classrooms and helps teachers meet Michigan and national education standards.
“Partnering with institutions such as The Henry Ford to support educational initiatives – especially those which emphasize science, technology, engineering and math – is a top priority for Meritor,” says Chip McClure, chairman, chief executive officer and president of Troy, Mich.-based Meritor. “At minimum, 50 percent of our global charitable contributions are dedicated to this area. We know effective learning not only inspires students to achieve their full potential but also sharpens the capabilities of employers such as Meritor as they compete on a global basis.”
The IEI is a virtual education R&D program designed to generate ongoing, innovative teaching and learning practices and products. The Henry Ford has developed prototype digital resources, including Educator Digikits, Innovation 101 and ExhibitBuilder, that can change how public, private and charter school educators fundamentally teach and how the current generation of students learn. The Innovation 101 curriculum incorporates interviews of Bill Gates, Dean Kamen, Steve Wozniak and others into innovative lesson plans that promote 21st century skills.
Meritor’s pledge will result in an initial test of the resources that The Henry Ford created to help educators promote 21st century skills in their classrooms. The pilot will involve two phases of educator recruiting, training and evaluations over the course of the next year. This will produce the data and feedback needed to refine The Henry Ford’s education products and process for widespread distribution and adoption in classrooms.
Educators from Michigan-based Henry Ford academies in Dearborn and Detroit, existing Henry Ford Teacher Fellows that represent a mix of public, private and charter schools in Michigan, and a few out-of-state educators will be the Innovation Education Adopters with the test pilot.
“By providing classrooms with cutting-edge digital resources, The Henry Ford and Meritor are becoming leaders for positive advancements in the American education system,” says Patricia E. Mooradian, president of The Henry Ford. “The tools that the IEI offers will help provide students with the critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity skills that are needed to be successful in college and today’s ever-changing workplace.”