ST.HELENS, ORE-- Where will the next great apps come from? Probably from a school near you.

Two Oregon schools are contenders to win Verizon Innovative App challenge. It's a chance to win $20,000 for the school.

This is the second year for the national event. St. Helens Middle School and the School of Science and Technology in Beaverton are Best in State. Some 1,300 teams from across the country entered the contest.

The challenge was to create an app that identifies a problem or need and find a solution. The 8th grade technology class at St. Helens Middle School came up with a periodic table of interactive elements. Their app even comes with 3D models to make it easier for students to understand chemistry.

At the School of Science and Technology, the computer club met twice a week for a month to develop its Student Connect app. It keeps students, teachers and parents communicating.

We know they love cell phones and hey, with a little creativity, a little thought, you can work yourself into a career, said Scott Charleston with Verizon Wireless Communications.

Both schools will move forward to the next round. On February 4th, the Best in State winners will be pared down to 24. On February 19th, that group will be whittled down to eight teams.

The national winner will be announced in June in Washington, DC. The winning school will receive $20,000. Team members will take home new Samsung tablets, plus help from MIT to bring their app to life.

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