"VEX IQ Robotics" now implemented in the Osakis schools were demonstrated for the School Board at its Monday, April 8 regular meeting.

Students snap together VEX IQ parts to build simple, powerful robots to explore open-ended challenges, which are designed to enhance their STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) skills.

Students Tyler Stier and Cohen Bensen are among eight boys and four girls in the Beta test group, which was in its fifth day of presentation.

Stan Moore, Osakis technology integrationist, explained the program to the board. Class is being held in the Business Lab this first time, on a trial basis to get used to the parts and curriculum design.

Following the demonstration, Moore presented his technology proposal to the School Board, which includes a VEX IQ coach, a VEX EDR coach, three EDR competition kits, one complete competition field measuring 8-by-12 feet, and yearly challenge kits.

Area schools are also looking to adding the robotics courses and competition, Moore commented.

Cost to start up the EDR program is estimated to be about $5,000 to get three team kits started in the high school and an additional cost for a coach or coaches to run the activity. School leaders hope to begin the program in the 2019-2020 school year.