Federal grant of $3 million coming to PSD
Money is coming to local schools thanks to the Polk County School Board accepting over $3 million from numerous federal grants.
While the money is just a portion of the district’s operating income, federal grants do remain an important part of improving and running Polk School District, and this most recent round of grants has been pledged towards various programs like teacher training and English as a Second Language classes.
“When we talk about our resources, we have local funds, state funds, we have federal grants and we need to make sure we have an approval- that we’re willing to accept these grants,” Superintendent Laurie Atkins said. “And looking at the amounts up here, I have no idea why we would not accept these federal grants because it really helps us in supporting of our educational quality and instructional programs.”
The Title I, Part A Grant, awarded to schools with high numbers of students from low-income families, alone is offering a sum of more than $2.5 million to Polk School District to help ensure all children meet the state-set standards.
It’s common to see Title I grant money spent on extra teachers or summer programs, but the board did not mention any specific use of the funds during their February 5 work session.
The Title II, Part A Grant offered up an additional $282,367 for the stated purpose of teacher training and learning, and the $75,326 from the Title III, Part A Grant was pledged toward the district’s English language learning program.
Money for the district also came in the form of a Title IV, Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grant in the amount of $177,041, and the Title V, Rural and Low Income Schools Grant for $145,304.
One use of the grants could be helping students from lower income families participate in field trips or out of school events like those approved during the work session. Both Cedartown High and Rockmart High wrestling teams were approved to travel for their competition trips in early February, and the board approved the Rockmart Middle School Beta Club’s trip to Orlando, Fla., on May 26 through May 31.
Before adjourning, the board gave back too and awarded Ferst Readers with a check for $2,570 to aid in their goal of increasing literacy among youth. The move came shortly after members Patty Rogers and Betty Nelson spoke as a delegation about the organization and its upcoming fundraiser.
“We want to make sure we continue our support,” Atkins said as she brandished the check. “Educators really support FERST Readers. We feel it’s very important that we instill literacy in our children from birth on up and that we continue to support each year.”
Ferst Readers were provied with a donation during the Polk County Board of Education’s February work session ahead of the organization’s forthcoming An Afternoon with Authors fundraiser on Feb. 24. Pictured are Ferst Readers’ Betty Nelson, Superintendent Laurie Atkins, Patty Rogers with Ferst Readers, and Assistant Superindent and PCCCA CEO Katie Thomas.