Philadelphia Selects CompassLearning™ for new Recreational and Educational Computer Sites

February 22, 2001

SAN DIEGO, CA-CompassLearning™, the leader in research-driven, standards-based digital-learning solutions that provide choices to help teachers manage student performance, personalize learning, and connect communities of learners, was selected by the City of Philadelphia to participate in the Philadelphia Department of Recreation new program, RECS – Recreational and Educational Computer Sites.

This program will provide children with computer access, assisting in the transformation of traditional recreational centers to multipurpose facilities that promote cooperative interaction between neighbors.

The RECS are intended to become the focal point in all neighborhoods. Programs will be developed that encourage individuals to come to the Recreation centers for personal development and growth. RECS will be incorporated into the City’s Digital Divide Strategy by more than doubling public computer access and providing technology training. The RECS continue the Department’s commitment to revitalizing Philadelphia’s neighborhoods by improving the quality of life for Philadelphia’s children, families, and seniors

The first RECS site at Kingsessing Recreation Center was unveiled as part of Black Family Technology Awareness week on February 5, 2001. Philadelphia Mayor John F. Street along with other city officials, community members, and corporate sponsors joined in a ribbon cutting ceremony for the first computer lab, equipped with ten computers with state of the art equipment.

Mark Hubble, President of CompassLearning™ said, “We are honored to have been selected in this important initiative. Virtually all of the nation’s children have access to computers at school; over two-thirds have access at home. But computer access is largely determined by household income and there are enormous disparities between rich and poor.

“Employers, educators, policymakers and parents agree that children need to become competent computer users to be prepared for life and work. The sad fact is this-just over 20% of children in families with annual incomes under $20,000 had a home computer in 1998, compared with over 90% of children in families with household income over $75,000. Fewer than 3% of low-income children reported using computers in libraries or community centers in 1998.

“We applaud Mayor Street and the City of Philadelphia for taking the initiative to narrow and eventually close the ‘digital divide’ and provide technology opportunities to all, regardless of income.”

CompassLearning™ is an operating subsidiary of WRC Media Inc. (, a publishing and media company, which creates and distributes innovative quality supplementary educational materials for use in schools, libraries, and the home. According to Educational Marketer, WRC Media was the nation’s largest supplementary materials publisher for 1999. WRC Media Inc has four principal operating subsidiaries.

CompassLearning™ Inc. is the leader in research-driven, standards-based digital learning solutions that provide choices to help teachers manage student performance, personalize learning, and connect communities of learners. With over 7,000 hours of curriculum and instruction, more than 20,000 schools use CompassLearning™ solutions.

Weekly Reader Corporation publishes Weekly Reader periodicals serving over 7 million school children. It also publishes other branded periodicals and instructional materials, including Teen Newsweek, published for middle and high school students.

World Almanac Education Group, Inc. publishes the World Almanac and World Almanac for Kids, Facts On File news periodicals and Internet services, Gareth Stevens books and the Funk & Wagnalls encyclopedia. The company distributes high quality books to schools and libraries through its Library Services division.

American Guidance Service, Inc. is a leader in leader in producing highly reliable and valid behavior, ability, achievement, and speech-language instruments, and publishes a variety of high-interest, low-reading-level textbooks for middle and high school students.