Kansas student uses robot to attend class

    12:37 PM, Dec 19, 2013   |    comments
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    HUTCHINSON, KS (CBS/KWCH) -- A Kansas student injured in a farm accident is able to attend class, even if he's hundreds of miles away recovering.

    Kolton Kincaid has been out of class since early November when an accident with this skid steer sent him to the hospital in critical condition.

    Now he's in Denver at a special rehab hospital hundreds of miles from his family and friends until earlier this week when he was able to return to class virtually.

    Kolton visited the school via robot thanks to the efforts of folks at Essdack who recorded the visit.

    Essdack is a Hutchinson Education company that, among other things, tests technology for use in the classroom. Marketing director Cody Heitschmidt said, "Admittedly there's a lot of us here that are just tech gadget people."

    Many at the company know the Kincaid family personally and just wanted to help out. Heitschmidt said, "It was about him being able to 'walk' the halls and shoot the breeze with his buddies at lunch and go see his teachers that he wanted to go see."

    They've been testing these new robots for use in distance learning and suggested Kolton be the first to use it in the classroom.

    Anyone can learn to drive one of these. It's actually pretty easy. And it doesn't matter if you're hundreds or thousands of miles away, or right here in the same room. All you need is a free app that you download to an iPad or an iPhone.

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