Grant for Noisy Classrooms

Holly Grove Elementary School of Holly Springs, N.C., was experiencing many challenges related to student engagement, including overcrowding and noise from both inside and outside the classroom.

One solution was proposed by Holly Grove's speech-language pathologist, who recommended a classroom voice amplification system to decrease the strain on teachers' voices, and allow all students to hear lessons clearly. Seeking such improvement, the Raleigh-area elementary school applied for a system available through the Be Heard|School Grant program.

The grant, presented by the Calypso School First Foundation (CSFF), is a program to benefit schools seeking to improve the communication between students and teachers in the classroom. The grant provides school-wide voice amplification systems and installations (up to 35 rooms per school) to three K-12 institutions each year.

"At Holly Grove Elementary School, our number one concern is the students," said Mike Matthews, Assistant Principal at Holly Grove Elementary School. "Through the Be Heard|School Grant program and Calypso's voice amplification systems, our students have a better opportunity to engage with teachers and understand the material being taught."

A growing portfolio of independent research supports the performance improvements in classrooms where voice amplification systems are used, including improved attention, increased motivation and fewer special education referrals. Furthermore, it's estimated as many as 30 percent of students in grades 3-6 have failed a 15 dB hearing test. Classroom voice amplification systems can improve the overall school experience by allowing students to hear and be heard.

"Holly Grove Elementary School has dedicated efforts on many levels to enhance communication with its students to help make them successful," said David H. Parish, Ph.D., president of Calypso Systems. "The school's new voice amplification systems will improve learning for students and aid teachers' ability to communicate in the classroom."