HMH joins The Bookshelf Project to revitalize urban school districts

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) today announced its involvement with The Bookshelf Project, an initiative to bring together renowned and committed partners in the public, private, and non-profit sectors to improve learning for 21st-century students.

This pilot project, focused primarily in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD), will provide Barnes & Noble NOOK Color™ e-readers for students, teachers and administrators in two Slavic Village-area schools: Washington Park High School and grades 6–8 at Mound K–8 School. Each NOOK will be loaded with the latest content from HMH.

The district-wide model project recognizes that 21st-century students, especially in grades 6–12, relentlessly consume great quantities of information through technology. The Wi-Fi-enabled NOOK e-reader allows students access to thousands of pages worth of information without bringing a single book home. The e-reader includes a built-in touch-word dictionary and encyclopedia, and access to hundreds of CMSD-created and third-party online video tutorials, outside book assignments and even the ability to create electronic notes that cannot be lost or stolen.

The Bookshelf Project is intended to help not only students, but also teachers, administrators and parents. Teachers will be able to obtain professional development both inside and outside the school day, with access to textbooks, online video tutorials, and outside book assignments. To prepare the district and its teachers and administration for the project, HMH is providing extensive professional development and training. For all its educational improvements, the Bookshelf Project also reflects economic reality by significantly lowering existing educational costs for Cleveland, Ohio, and CMSD. The public/private partnerships have become a key to this success.

“As we close the achievement and technology gap, we welcome and fully expect students will engage in an active technology-based collaboration with their teachers,” said Steven M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio. “As a result, all students will become globally competitive readers, writers, and achievers.”

The Bookshelf Project is an expanding partnership currently comprising HMH and several other partners: Frank G. Jackson, Mayor of the City of Cleveland; Eric Gordon, Chief Executive Officer of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District; Congresswoman Marcia Fudge, U.S. House of Representatives, Kurt Karakul, President, Third Federal Foundation; Barbara R. Snyder, President, Case Western Reserve University; Michael Walker, Executive Director, Partnership for a Safer Cleveland; Steve M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio; and Barnes and Noble.