By CLIFF HIGHTOWER
The Spring Hill Public Library has received more than $9,000 in state money to help buy laptops to further digital education.
“That award will help us buy 10 laptops,” said Spring Hill Library Director Hulin Bivens.
The total amount of the award from the Tennessee State Library and Archives was $9,786.60. The library will match the grant with $1,087.40, Bivens said.
Secretary of State Tre Hargett was on hand this week to present the check to the library.
In a statement, Hargett said more access is needed.
“Libraries aren’t just about books anymore,” Hargett said. “They are technology hubs, especially in underserved communities. We know providing updated laptops and training will ensure every Tennessean has the resources and skills they need to work on school projects, apply for jobs or conduct the same business many of us do online every day. Access is something many of us take for granted.”
Bivens said the library’s portion of the grant will fund hiring someone to come in and teach classes on the laptops. The educator will teach classes on computers and information technology.
Additional money from the library is also going to fund the LYNDA Database Curriculum Collection.
That curriculum can be accessed from any computer with a library card, Bivens said. It allows users to access a variety of topics and is completely user-based.
“It’s all self-paced,” Bivens said.
For example, the curriculum may have 10 classes on a topic. The user may choose to complete all 10 or just complete the lessons they find essential.
The target audience is across the board, he said. It could be used by teenagers, job seekers or business owners trying to increase their skills.
“We’ll have that program functional July 1,” he said.
Cliff Hightower can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @CliffHightower.