Olentangy elementary students will get some high-tech help in math this school year.

The Olentangy Board of Education on July 9 unanimously approved a $300,000 purchase from Mind Research Institute for the purchase of ST Math and New Fluency software.

ST Math is game-based software aimed at impriving mathematics comprehension through visual learning.

" 'ST' stands for spatial temporal," said Peggy McMurry, curriculum director. "That's the region of your brain that holds short-term memory; it's where you hold visual memory and mental representations. By holding that in your short-term memory, it allows (students) to manipulate that information."

The software relies on visual cues and stays away from word problems and large amounts of reading, McMurry said.

More than 1.2 million students in 47 states use the program, according to the company (stmath.com).

The board approved buying 6,390 licenses for the software.

The purchase allows the ST Math to be used at all elementary schools by students who need additional help.

Olentangy piloted the software at two school buildings during the 2016-17 school year -- Arrowhead and Heritage elementary schools -- and teachers "found that it really was working and they felt that their students had a firmer grasp by using ST Math," McMurry said.

In other business, the board unanimously approved a $58,000 contract with M&D Blacktop Co. for tennis-court surface maintenance at Olentangy and Liberty high schools.

The next school board meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Aug. 9 at district headquarters, 7840 Graphics Way.

editorial@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekNEWS