Press/Journalists
Press Release
April 10, 1998
National Archives Digital Classroom Included in New Interagency Web Site

Washington, DC . . . The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) is proud to announce that materials in its online Digital Classroom are accessible through a new interagency Web site, Federal Resources for Educational Excellence (FREE). Designed for teachers, students, and parents, FREE serves as the online gateway to educational resources available from Federal agencies.

Resources include maps, photographs, historical documents, scientific experiments, tools, mathematical challenges, and lesson plans. A search option allows users to have seamless access to materials offered by more than 30 different agencies. Through a "message board," teachers, students, and parents have an opportunity to describe their favorite FREE resources. Materials from NARA’s Digital Classroom were among the first to be highlighted.

Secretary of Education Richard W. Riley explained that this collaborative site "offers a glimpse of how government can use technology to serve citizens in ways barely dreamed of a decade ago."

The Digital Classroom is an extension of NARA’s education program on the Internet. It features five sections: Primary Sources and Activities, Research and National History Day, Publications, Professional Development, and Limited Engagement. It provides links to other parts of the NARA Web site including the Online Exhibit Hall, the Presidential Libraries, and the NAIL database. Its URL is http://www.archives.gov/digital_classroom/. The site offers online lessons developed by education specialists that feature archival documents and promote the development of critical thinking skills. Accompanying the documents is historical background and a wide range of teaching activities that correlate to both the National Standards for History and Civics and Government and suggest cross-curricular connections.

FREE debuts this week at http://www.ed.gov/free.

For additional PRESS information, please contact the National Archives Public Affairs staff at (301) 837-1700 or by e-mail.

98-69

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