In the hands of our kids: How do we know when technology is helpful or harmful?

As an educational program that relies on technology to function, the impact that our software has on students is something we, well, sometimes worry about. And for good reason.

Research shows that certain interactions with tech devices raise dopamine levels significantly, and impact the frontal cortex – or part of the brain that helps control impulse – in the same way cocaine does. In essence, it has the power to create an unhealthy addiction that can cause even young kids to lose interest in the sports they play, reading or playing outside.

Children may also display difficulties with following multistep directions, problem solving with peers, and attending to task; all of which are necessary skills in the classroom and at home.

That’s pretty scary, especially when it’s difficult to tell when technology in education is empowering a student to learn something new in a more interesting way, or when it’s actually changing the way they think in a way that could be harmful.

A lot of times, it’s a bit of both.

Tech and Education: A thin line

An example of an educational tool that could go either way? Minecraft, a multi platform game where players can create their own worlds and experiences by using building blocks.

On one hand, it’s a visual, fun and creative tool for kids to learn about resource management, collaboration, perseverance, and even how to analyze cost over benefit. Teachers have used it to teach about history, problem solving, writing and comprehension in a way that many students find easier to understand and connect with.

But Minecraft also has several addictive qualities to it that can take away from what is supposed to be a valuable lesson in class. It’s an endless game with endless possibilities. And because it is a game, if it isn’t introduced the right way students might entirely miss the point – instead playing for the sake of playing without an understanding about what they are supposed to be learning.

Before school even starts, many parents now turn to iPads and tablets loaded with educational tools that can help their young ones learn how to read, spell and write. But these same devices that can further a child’s communication skills are also used to distract and quiet children when a parent or caretaker needs a moment of peace.

Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, until it is.

The “pass-back effect” can ultimately prevent kids from creating their own ways to cope with boredom or uncertainty, or they may lack social skills and expectations, like giving someone their full attention and putting devices away in certain situations.

Not having these skills once it’s time to enter school can impact a teacher’s ability when they not only need to teach students required curriculum, but also how to entertain themselves, communicate face-to-face or simply to pay attention (although, to be fair, this is and will always be their lifelong struggle).

Touch devices can also hamper kids’ physical skills: they may not have the dexterity or strength to hold a pencil or understand how much pressure to put on paper while writing because they grew up swiping and tapping. You see the same skills lacking in children who grow up in poverty and aren’t as exposed to objects like Play-Doh, blocks or coloring and writing utensils.

To be fair, it isn’t just the kids

In today’s world, it’s safe to say that most of us probably struggle a little with using technology in healthy doses.

Adults get lost in the Facebook or Instagram scroll, and many of us just can’t stand that little, red notification circle on our email icon, so we open it up and clear it ASAP. We find ourselves checking our devices for no reason at all, or even while most of us are doing the most dangerous thing we’ll do any day of the year: driving.

The struggle to balance virtuality with reality has permeated our culture enough where there is now technology rehab, where teens and young adults can go when they have lost control.

How DIBS thinks about tech in education

When it’s used responsibly, tech changes the world for the better, but we still have a lot to learn about its limits, and ours.

Here are three things we’ve learned so far:

  1. When it comes to reading, there’s still something special about the physical book. And it can’t be replaced by a tablet or Kindle. Maybe it will disappear in the future, but the act of flipping through pages, being able to inspect an illustration’s detail up close or adding your own drawings or notes (not necessarily condoned, but many of us did this as a kid, and maybe we still do!) helps build a connection to the stories we consume that tapping or swiping just doesn’t get at.
  2. Keep it intrinsic. Games, even when meant to foster an interest in something new or help with a subject a student is struggling in, often depend on extrinsic rewards to keep students motivated. Whether it’s leveling up, receiving tokens, or earning tools, the point – which should be to not only teach new skills, but also foster a student’s awareness, interest and passion around learning those skills – can get lost. When a kid does their math homework because it means they’ll be able to advance in a classroom video game they enjoy, that’s pretty awesome, as long as they understand why that lesson exists and how it’s supposed to be beneficial for them. But when a kid “games” this system by sharing homework answers among classmates so everyone gets to play without putting in the work, extrinsic rewards become problematic.
  3. Be aware of how information that tech helps unlock can influence student self esteem. Competition is already a complication that classrooms struggle to manage for one reason or the other: students sometimes put each other down or make fun when someone falls behind, or a student gives up when they realize they aren’t on the same track as their peers. Tech that’s constantly tracking metrics like how many reading levels have been surpassed or how many books were read can be extremely helpful, but it’s how that information is presented and explained to students that makes a huge difference in how they view their abilities. Especially as they grow older, the social pressures to be smart or cool in the classroom weigh heavier and heavier. They are more likely to organize themselves into fixed buckets (“I’m a dumb kid”) generally, but especially if they don’t have the tools or context they need to transform a data point into something actionable that will help them excel.

If you want help deciphering which apps, games or even TV shows and movies are appropriate for your kiddos, visiting Common Sense Media might be a good start. This site not only reviews new products and offers suggestions for certain age groups, but it also has guidance on topics like limiting tech use in the home, increasing your child’s media literacy and dealing with cyberbullying.

The American Academy of Pediatrics also has new recommendations for how to introduce children to technology at young ages, including avoiding screens altogether for kids younger than 18 months.

What are your thoughts on this topic? Feel free to drop us a line in the comment section – we’d love to hear your ideas and continue this discussion.

A soccer ball and a book: How we think about kids’ relationship with reading

Hi there, I’m Gina.

As an Omaha professional, mother, and dedicated volunteer to literacy efforts, I’ve spent the past several years championing literacy through the Literacy Center, which is focused on building literacy skills for adults. I recently started working with DIBS, so you’ll be hearing more from me later on.

But, to kick this off I wanted to share my experience watching the DIBS program in action.

My visit to Adam’s Elementary brings back a memory, one I’ll never forget, when my husband and I coached soccer for kindergarteners…
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In passing one day, I was talking to my father-in-law, who is a highly-tenured soccer coach. He asked me how coaching these five-year-olds was going.

Frustrated, I told him, “Trying to teach basic soccer skills to kindergarteners is absolutely impossible. I can’t even get them to pay attention. I’m just not good at this.”  

He told me I was going about it completely wrong.

“Gina, at this age, it’s not about teaching them the skills. That comes later on. Your main goal is to introduce them to the relationship with the ball. First, they build the relationship with the ball: this is my ball. Then it is: this is me, my ball, and my teammate. But before they can get into understanding the skills, they need to have a relationship with the ball.”

Maybe you can assume that DIBS is a reading program that builds comprehension and literacy skills at an early age. But while I watched first grade students check books in and out at on their own, I began to realize it’s much more fundamental than that.

Watching DIBS in action

Walking into a classroom at Adams Elementary, I immediately noticed bins of books at the back of the room. Each one was categorized with an alphabetical letter on front, and an open laptop that had simple and colorful images to select from on the screen.  First graders walked into the classroom to start their normal Friday routines.

Without hesitation, the first child hung up his backpack and grabbed a book out of it. He went to a specific lettered bin and sifted through the selections. He proceeded to the next bin to search. I could tell when he found the book he wanted, as a half grin came over his face.

He grabbed the book, went to the laptop, and used the touchpad to scroll through a screen lined with different colored shapes to find the one that said his name. As he clicked on it, the last step was to hold the book up so the web camera could scan the book for him to take home that night. Once complete, the first grader walked back to his table.

I began to realize how my father-in-law’s advice in soccer transcended into the work being done here.

Being hyper focused on how well a child is comprehending material and at what level they are reading is important in the early years of a student’s introduction to reading. However, they really need to first build a relationship with books before we can start to focus on the other stuff.

The stark evidence of poverty in classrooms

Once you get young students to see books as part of their routine, then it can become a habit. And then schools can do the work necessary to build reading and comprehension skills. But without first having the relationship to books, the challenges increase – especially when there are external factors affecting a child’s basic needs: food, shelter, clothing, education and healthcare.

Which brings me to a second realization:

As my eyes followed this student back to his desk, I noticed that many kids in the class were sitting and eating breakfast at their tables. I was told these meals were part of a breakfast program for low-income students.

Knowing that DIBS is especially focused on Omaha schools whose poverty level is above 70 percent, until that moment it hadn’t clicked in my head what that actually looked like. Seeing roughly half that classroom sitting and eating because they did not have access to these meals at home, I realized the scope of this reality for families in Omaha.

According to the 2015-2016 Omaha Public School (OPS) district free and reduced lunch program:

  • Free and reduced breakfast/lunch programs (FRPL) are a standard indicator of socioeconomic status universally available to public schools across the nation.
  • Participation is highest in OPS elementary schools with 75.8 percent of PK‐6 students enrolled in the FRPL program.
  • Student poverty as measured by participation in the FRPL program has been shown to be highly predictive of district and school level performance in state and national assessments.

My Final Take: Get Out, Learn More About Student Needs 

It was all coming together. If a kid doesn’t have the support they need to eat a good meal at home, their entire school day is impacted as it can impact their concentration and focus.

It’s the equivalent of a child going to soccer practice unprepared, without the right equipment. Either way, that kid is starting out off track.

How can they even begin to start a relationship so they can build good habits, be it with a book or a ball?

Being a child of first-generation immigrants, I understand the challenges and struggles. My parents had limited resources, learned English as a second language, and did their best to add education into our lives without really understanding it themselves.

Yet, I fell in love with books at a very young age. I loved to read and write and was able to get good grades so I could go to college and then on to a Master’s program.

Now as a career-oriented adult, I have the opportunity to raise my children without the struggles many parents face. Yet, I know this isn’t a reality for every parent or child. It’s programs like DIBS that are catalysts to help drive that relationship with books at a very young age.

Take a moment, like I did, to get to know your community a little better.

Click on the map below to get a better idea of what poverty looks like in Omaha schools, and how it impacts student reading. 

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A vitamin vs. a pain pill: Why do we wait for kids to fall behind?

In the late 1800s, Joseph Malins, an English activist, wrote a poem about a cliff, a fence and an ambulance. The gist: There’s a cliff that’s very pleasant to walk on, so many people in the town nearby venture close to its edge. Some slip and fall into the valley below, and the town decides something has to be done.

They become divided when they must decide whether to build a fence or keep an ambulance down in the valley. The majority claim it’s most important to send an ambulance to care for those who are injured. A fence still may not stop them from slipping or falling, they argue, but an ambulance will ensure their injuries can be mended.

The last segment goes like this:

Better guide well the young than reclaim them when old,
 For the voice of true wisdom is calling:
 “To rescue the fallen is good, but ’tis best
 To prevent other people from falling.”
 Better close up the source of temptation and crime
 Than deliver from dungeon or galley;
 Better put a strong fence round the top of the cliff.
 Than an ambulance down in the valley.

Ambulance-Obsessed

We live in a world that is all about pain pills – and we aren’t just talking about muscle relaxers here. We’re talking about a plethora of solutions for problems after the fact, and a handful for before. Rehabilitation for alcohol abuse, remedial education programs, an ambulance stationed at the bottom of a dangerous cliff. All absolutely essential in society, but it can seem a bit backwards when you sit back and look at it all.

So, why aren’t more vitamin-like, preventative approaches taken to avoid some of these problems, instead of waiting for trouble to happen? Why aren’t we focusing more on how to best prepare kids for education, rather than developing solutions when a student starts to fall off track?

Don’t get us wrong, we’re not saying that preventative approaches aren’t taken at all. We have serious appreciation for the people who see their value – and this goes far beyond educators, parents, communities and programs focus here too. We just argue that vitamins aren’t implemented at anywhere near the rate pain pills are.

In reality, our way of parsing out kids that need help is waiting for them to fail.

We chatted about this phenomenon with Dr. Iheoma Iruka, Director of Research and Evaluation at the Buffet Early Childhood Institute. She researches how early childhood experiences (birth to age 8) like growing up in a low-income household or being an ethnic minority can impact learning and development.

When you have lots of murders, then people begin to say that crime is a problem, but you almost need that for people to get on it. People don’t like waiting that long, and so instead of patience they need proof. And while you might understand as a parent, and really just as a human, that there’s a reason why people spent lots of time on young kids and not after college, still they disconnect their own way of being from policy. They have this idea that it’s them over there and then I’m over here.

People disconnect by saying this is your problem as opposed to this is our collective responsibility.

Why vitamins aren’t cool

  1. Vitamins aren’t “sexy,” ground-shaking or dramatic solutions, they don’t have the curb appeal that an ambulance might. They tend to be incredibly simple, but are difficult to implement because more than anything they require a change in behavior. And in the pain pill society we live in, behavior often doesn’t change until a situation becomes something close to do-or-die.
  2. Vitamins require consistency which requires will power which requires patience. The pay offs of a vitamin usually aren’t immediately noticeable, or noticeable at all if they actually prevent something from occurring. If a fence was put at the top of the cliff from the get-go, chances are no one would have ever fallen off, and the issue would have never existed.

We love fixing people as opposed to preventing things, although we almost never actually fix them and oftentimes we actually make it worse. But, it makes us feel better.

The proof is in the pudding

Like Dr. Iruka describes earlier, we prefer to wait for absolute, serious proof of a problem and then work to tackle it. But waiting for serious signs that show a student is absolutely struggling with reading and comprehension can sometimes mean losing the window needed to get them on track.

*From our observations in classrooms, when students begin to move up reading levels 
throughout the course of the year but there's a student left behind who either 
hasn't improved according to testing or has actually backtracked, slowly but surely 
they lose hope in their ability to get better at reading, and they start to give up.

What needs to be better understood is that a major reason why some kids never need an intervention or remedial program is because they have interventions outside of school that aren’t being clearly recognized: influences like financially stable parents who are aware of how important it is to read with their child and work to develop their skills.

There is a lack of understanding and empathy around the difference here because as a parent, a teacher or school leader or someone in the community, it’s hard to know what it’s like to

  • not realize how vital reading at early ages is for a child’s academic career,
  • not have enough money to buy your child books or
  •  be illiterate or a non-English speaker and not able to read to them at bedtime

if you’ve never experienced it.

And when we can’t understand these things, we tend to disassociate.

When the proof doesn’t make sense with our reality, we start to see things as me vs. them:

It’s this idea that if something’s working for all of the people over here, then the reason why it’s not working for the people over there is because they are doing it wrong.

There is a real economic value in being white and English-speaking, and some people don’t understand that this doesn’t translate to blacks and minorities and non-English speakers. You can give the same exact money to Omaha Public Schools and to Gretna, and there’s going to be a different outcome because the communities those schools serve have different assets and income.

So we need to ask: 

‘We are providing quality based on whose standards and definitions?’

In conclusion…kind of

We realize this isn’t really getting at an answer here. But, we hope this helps foster discussion in your household, community or just among your own beliefs about how we create solutions for kids who fall behind in school. Could this be better? How do we get there?

We’re going to continue to wrestle with this in further blog posts, so keep an eye out for Equal vs. Equitable in Education: Why it’s vital to understand the difference.

Share your thoughts through the comment section, drop us a note on our contact page or leave us a message on Facebook!

The Book Mirage: An illusion of endless reading opportunities for kids in Omaha

Picture two 1st grade students. Their classroom is filled with books that line several different book shelves, which they will pick out and read independently. They spend the day going over sentence structures, they take a spelling test, they visit the library. Essentially, between 8:50 AM and 4:05 PM, both students had the same opportunities to grow their reading skills.

But then the students go home, where they spend over half their day during the school week, and two very different stories begin to form.

  • Student #1 Has a bookshelf filled with good reads, and she picks one to read with her family every night. She’s always been surrounded with books and supported to read them, so she’s fostered a love for reading at a very young age. She visits the public library almost every weekend. Reading is her favorite subject and she excels at it.
  • Student #2 has a handful of books, but most are either too easy or hard to read. Sometimes she will read with her family, but her dad works most nights and her mom is usually busy taking care of her two younger siblings. She rarely gets new books because her family barely makes enough to pay the bills. She has only been to the public library once because her family doesn’t have a car. She struggles in school because she has a hard time reading and understanding directions.

Student #2 lives in what we call a “Book Desert.”

Like the desert ground is sometimes so dry it forms a web of cracked earth, this student’s life is filled with knowledge gaps because a vital resource, books, is missing outside of regimented school reading or library time.

It seems like she has abundant opportunities to get better at and enjoy reading in class, but since the access she has to reading at home is either restricted or nonexistent, she falls far behind Student #1.

Welcome to an idea we call…

THE BOOK MIRAGE

…It’s the feeling you get when you realize that just because kids are constantly surrounded by books doesn’t mean they are properly supported to read and comprehend them, and that this is why droves of young students continue to struggle and fall behind.
It’s when you see the difference between a student who’s enabled to read outside of the classroom and a student whose reading is restricted.

It happens when you live in the world’s most powerful nation, with public libraries accessible to all, classrooms stuffed with books, and yet they still aren’t getting into kids’ hands.

It’s an illusion of abundance that creates passivity.

 

Poverty, and a lack of understanding around what growing up in poverty means, is one of the largest culprits that feeds into The Book Mirage. Over 60 percent of kids who grow up in low-income households don’t have age-appropriate books to read at home.

But there are a number of other reasons that explain this phenomenon:

  1. Public and school libraries aren’t the best distribution point because they aren’t always accessible, especially if students rely on public transportation.
  2. While teachers might load up their classrooms with books, many are reluctant to send them home with kids because they are often purchased out-of-pocket.
  3. Most public schools are unsure about investing in this because classrooms and libraries already have books. With extremely tight budgets and a myriad of other responsibilities and programs to run, the value isn’t always easy to see.

In, Omaha Public Schools over 75 percent of elementary students are considered to be living in poverty.

When these students go without opportunities for nightly, in-home reading, it severely hurts their ability to build literacy skills at a crucial time in development – when achieving Third Grade Reading Proficiency is paramount to future success.

It’s critical this proficiency is reached in 3rd grade because classroom dynamics begin to shift from “learning to read” to “reading to learn,” allowing students to master more complex subject matter in the 4th grade and beyond.

According to sociologist Donald Hernandez of City University of New York, kids who don’t reach proficiency by the 3rd grade are four times more likely to drop out of high school.

Which makes the following statistic all the more devastating:

In 2015,  77 percent of 4th grade students growing up in poverty in Nebraska scored below proficient in reading according to National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) data.

Devastating, but not irreversible.

It’s high time we work to eradicate the idea that just because kids are in school and school’s have books they have the same opportunities to achieve reading proficiency.

WE BELIEVE THERE ARE TWO VITAL STEPS HERE:

  1. Not only acknowledging this reality, The Book Mirage, but caring enough to
  2. Develop solutions that help close this staggering resource gap between students without putting the brunt of the work on teachers to accomplish.

From our experiences working in elementary schools over the past several years, we’ll absolutely be the first to admit that these are incredibly difficult to accomplish, especially on a wide scale.

That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try.

We’ve been able to prove in two Omaha elementary schools that this is possible. And while we haven’t perfected these solutions, we continue to build better, faster, more enticing and trackable ways to get books in the hands of students that need them the most, keeping teachers’ precious time and resources in mind.

And our estimates show this can happen with just $19 per student, per school year.

Omaha, we can’t afford to not do this. Together, let’s Make The Book Mirage a Reality, giving our kids better opportunities so they can create a better a future.

 

The Hopefuls of Public Education in Omaha: We aren’t defiant, we just aren’t convinced

We don’t have charter schools and we don’t have Teach for America, but that doesn’t mean Omaha, Nebraska doesn’t care about education. We’d argue that it means our city’s leaders are most passionate about tackling the underlying issue that has proven, time and again, to be the largest impetus for why kids fall through the cracks. It isn’t always because of bad teachers, and it isn’t always because of low-funded schools without enough resources.

It’s almost always poverty.

And when over 70 percent of elementary students within Omaha Public Schools (our largest, most urban district) are coming from poverty – which could mean homes without books for young students to read, without parents who are literate or who understand the importance of education, without money or transportation to travel or learn outside of school or their neighborhoods – what kind of expectations can we set, realistically, for teachers to meet during an 8am to 3pm school day?

When we say “It takes a village to raise a child,” we often look at schools and teachers and ask, “Why aren’t things changing? You’re the village, you need to figure this out.” And we forget about the other half of student’s lives. We forget about what happens after the school bell rings. We forget that students only spend about 15 percent of their time in school, versus 53 percent of their time at home or in their communities.

We remember this at DIBS because we live in that world, that vital part of students’ lives that occurs once they’ve walked out the schoolhouse front doors.

Why we forget: How much more can we really do? It’s out of our hands.

Now, we know what some of you might be thinking: We’ve already spent tons of money on our public schools and there hasn’t been a whole lot of change because of it. Let’s just start with holding teachers accountable and breaking through school system bureaucracies that have seemingly failed these kids, that stuff’s hard enough. Eliminating poverty, though? There’s no way.

Folks. We get it. And believe us, we dwell on and sweat over these thoughts each and every day.

Our Founder came into this work as a Teach For America Corps Member teaching first graders in some of the highest poverty schools in New Orleans. Like some of you, he was deeply frustrated with our public school system and thought: “Come on, can’t we expect more for how much we’re spending?”

But his teaching experience humbled him, and he saw many of his Teach for America peers humbled as well. So, he started DIBS under a different mindset:

The DIBS mindset: We must address the underlying, core issues

Until we figure out better ways to fix the foundation of kids’ lives, any other structural changes we make will end up cracking and crumbling no matter the good and wholesome intentions behind them. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to implement these sorts of changes, it just means we absolutely cannot forget about where some of our kids are coming from, and we need to recognize how unprepared and unsupported some of them are outside of the school day.

We must also recognize how gigantic and abominable a task it is for schools and teachers to not only guarantee students are proficient and excelling, but to also make sure every single one’s basic needs, like food, health and hygiene, are being met. To help them feel loved and supported, especially when there’s no one at home to do that. And when they get older, to give them enough hope and courage and knowledge to believe in themselves and stay out of trouble.

We need to work together on this.

One big, serious divide

At DIBS, we offer one insanely simple way to empower kids when they are just starting, so they feel on-track with their classmates and begin to realize their potential: making sure each one has the opportunity to take a book home to read every night.

It’s hard to believe that isn’t already happening, isn’t it? All of us are familiar with school libraries, maybe classroom libraries as well, and so when we think about book availability being an issue, well, it doesn’t seem to be an issue at all.

But when a student’s only interaction with a book happens when they go to the library once a week or when their teacher reads to their class, you can start to see how many holes there are when you compare their relationship with books to other students who have abundant opportunities to read outside the classroom.

That’s where this statistic from the International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement comes in:

Over 60 percent of students in poverty do not have access to a single age-appropriate book at home.

This is staggering. This hugely affects those who struggle the most, who have a day-to-day mentality because that’s their reality. This is one major reason why there is an almost endless cycle of poverty in North and South Omaha. Because when kids grow up without the simple supports they need outside of school, they miss early but major milestones, and then age and circumstance and the complications of life continue to build up against them until there is almost no hope of catching up to their counterparts.

This isn’t necessarily the product of poor parenting or a teacher that just should have done more, it’s the product of a lack of opportunity and a lack of open doors for kids to wander through and explore.

You might be skeptical, we might be hopeful, but Omaha can be better

Omaha is their home, and Omaha is our home. And, Omaha happens to host a surprisingly well-equipped philanthropic community that is dedicated to bettering early childhood education and students’ lives.

And despite a tsunami of other states adopting the idea of charter schools and inviting in new teachers and methods to “shake up” a system that has seemed so stagnant, our philanthropic organizations and education leaders haven’t bought in to it.

We are not quite convinced that these are the answers we’ve been looking for. One reason here is  because no one can yet see how to integrate the better parts of new educational reform movements into traditional districts so that no child falls through the cracks.

At DIBS, we resonate with a dwindling tribe we like to call Public Education Hopefuls who believe in the power of our system and community and support a holistic, every-single-school-in-the-city solution.

We want to help light the fire for fruitful conversations around this, no matter which side you stand on. This is the only way we can move forward.

We’re excited, and we hope you join us.

The DIBS Team, August 2016

Hi there Omaha. We’re DIBS for Kids, and we’ve got a lot of work to do.

We are working with public schools in Omaha to provide an opportunity for all kids, Pre-K through 2nd grade, to read a book at home, every night for fun.

But you won’t only hear about our effort to Deliver Infinite Book Shelves (DIBS) to kids all across the Omaha community…

  • Through this blog we will share our logic for why this program is attempting to cut to the heart of many of the social issues and challenges our public schools face. And why teachers are not ideally positioned to take these things on themselves.
  • We will also share just why we see so much promise in the 515 families that we have the pleasure of serving. And how with merely a little support we see parents serving as the catalyst for dramatic school improvement.
Oh, and you’re going to hear about Omaha.
Lots about Omaha.
Like how we believe this community is uniquely poised to do things nationally-significant within our public schools…
No.
Historically significant.

WELCOME TO DIBS.

David Orrick
Founder, DIBS for Kids
The former first grade teacher who just talks a lot. 
 
Kylie Gumpert
Growth Engineer, DIBS for Kids
The quieter force who actually makes this all happen. 

Summer 2016