Hyundai and High Point Elementary Students Celebrate Launch of New Blended Learning Initiative at Pinellas County Schools

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CLEARWATER, Fla., Oct. 2, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Hundreds of students, educators and community leaders celebrated a grant to improve math education from Hyundai Motor America on Sept. 27 at High Point Elementary School. This latest grant from Hyundai's ST Math Initiative will support a unique, research-based blended learning math program at three schools in the Pinellas County Schools. Hyundai executives and PCS representatives were on hand for a celebratory assembly and ribbon cutting ceremony, where students also demonstrated their new math program.

About 2,000 students and 75 teachers at High Point, Belcher and Bardmoor elementary schools will benefit from Hyundai's initiative, which enables the schools to implement the unique ST Math® program that includes visually-based instructional software, teacher training and ongoing educational support for kindergarten through fifth grade.

"We're grateful to Hyundai for this opportunity to expand access to a proven tool that will deepen our students' mathematical understanding and problem-solving abilities," said Michael A. Grego, Ed.D., Superintendent of PCS. "We see tremendous potential for ST Math to help our students succeed today and in the future."

Pinellas is one of four school districts across the country selected to participate in the Hyundai ST Math Initiative beginning this fall. Others include Chicago, New York City and Spring, Texas. The initiative builds on Hyundai's previous support, which includes grants to put ST Math in six schools in Los Angeles, Orange County, Calif., and Washington, D.C.

"Hyundai understands the importance of fostering the next generation of problem-solvers who can develop innovative solutions to difficult challenges," said Zafar Brooks, Director of Corporate Social Responsibility and Diversity Inclusion at Hyundai Motor America. "That's exactly what we're doing with MIND Research Institute's game-changing ST Math program and the help of local educators."

The ST Math instructional software introduces math concepts via visual puzzles, with symbols and words appearing later, making the program equally accessible and challenging for all students, regardless of language proficiency. Following a blended learning model, students learn at their own pace with ST Math in computer labs, and then their teachers connect the puzzles to math concepts in the classroom lessons. Research shows that schools using the ST Math program have on average doubled or tripled students' growth in math proficiency on state math tests.

"We're excited to have Hyundai partnering with MIND and school districts that share our vision of transforming math education," said Matthew Peterson, co-founder and Chief Operating Officer of MIND Research Institute. "Today, the energy at Highpoint was palpable, so now we need to continue working together to channel that into student success."

About the Hyundai ST Math Initiative





The Hyundai ST Math Initiative will benefit over 6,000 students and 200 teachers in Chicago; New York City; Spring, Texas and Pinellas, Florida. Hyundai Motor America is providing grants to 15 high-need elementary schools in these markets to provide a unique research-based ST Math instructional software, teacher training and ongoing educational support. The visually-based ST Math program has been shown to double or triple schools' growth rates in math proficiency. Follow updates at the hashtag #HyundaiLovesJiJi.

About MIND Research Institute

MIND Research Institute is an education nonprofit dedicated to ensuring that all students are mathematically equipped to solve the world's most challenging problems. MIND's distinctive visual approach to math and problem-solving is the basis of its innovative, research-proven ST Math® programs for elementary and secondary schools. MIND's programs currently reach over 500,000 students and 21,000 teachers in more than 1,780 schools in 30 states. For more information, visit www.mindresearch.net.

About Hyundai Motor America

Hyundai Motor America, headquartered in Costa Mesa, Calif., is a subsidiary of Hyundai Motor Co. of Korea. Hyundai vehicles are distributed throughout the United States by Hyundai Motor America and are sold and serviced through more than 820 dealerships nationwide. All Hyundai vehicles sold in the U.S. are covered by the Hyundai Assurance program, which includes the 5-year/60,000-mile fully transferable new vehicle limited warranty, Hyundai's 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain limited warranty, and five years of complimentary Roadside Assistance. Hyundai Assurance includes Assurance Connected Care that provides Hyundai owners with proactive safety and car care services made possible by the Hyundai Blue Link telematics platform, complimentary for three years. These services include Automatic Collision Notification, Enhanced Roadside Assistance, Vehicle Diagnostic Alert, Monthly Vehicle Health Report and in-vehicle service scheduling. For more details on Hyundai Assurance, please visit www.HyundaiAssurance.com.

About Pinellas County Schools

The Pinellas County School district is located on Florida's west coast along the Gulf of Mexico and is part of the Tampa Bay area. Pinellas County Schools is the seventh-largest district in the state and the 26th-largest in the nation. The school district is the largest employer in Pinellas County with 17,000 staff who serve nearly 104,000 pre-K through 12th-grade students. For more information on Pinellas County Schools, please visit www.pcsb.org.

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CONTACT: Abby Daniels MIND Research Institute 949-345-8636 adaniels@mindresearch.net Melanie Marquez Parra Pinellas County Schools 727- 588-6501 parram@pcsb.org Walter Rodriguez Hyundai Motor America 714-824-0302 wrodriguez@hmausa.com Joe Foster Finn Partners 323-572-5361 joe@finnpartners.com

Source:MIND Research Institute