Schools get 21st Century grants

Published 12:26 pm Monday, August 21, 2017

Funds go to after school programs to help students

Two local schools have gotten grants to continue helping students learn outside of their regular class time.

On Friday, State Senator Bob Peterson (R-Washington Court House) announced that Chesapeake schools got $200,000 for the P.E.A.K.E program  and Dawson-Bryant schools got $200,000 each for its 21st Century Community Learning Centers programs.

The program helps tutor students and provides other academic enrichment opportunities in rural schools after school hours.

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Chesapeake Middle School assistant principal John Gibson also serves as the program manager for P.E.A.K.E for the district. He said the Chesapeake Elementary and Middle schools received a continuation grant for the third year.

“Those are $200,000 grants, annually, which is very significant for the after school programs,” he said. “The high school just received a brand new five-year grant, so they will start this fall with 21st Century grant. It is a very big deal.”

In Ohio, the grants awarded to schools and community-based organizations are on five-year grant cycles. Continuing grantees are required to submit information each year to continue their grants through the five-year cycle.

Gibson said that there were 300 high schools that applied, but only 171 programs got grants.

“So we were very fortunate to get one of those grants,” he said.

He said the after school programs have the same focus on three areas: reading and math engagement, enrichment and enhancement; to engage families in the academic process through activities at the school; and cultural enhancement by going to places like the zoo, recreational activities, plays and musical performances.

“We are really excited that these grants can continue to help our overarching mission,” Gibson said.

The after school program also does things like send food home for the weekend for children in need.

It also has a driver’s education class for high schoolers. It also helps students study for the ACT test, do credit recovery and helps students pass all seven end-of-year assessments needed to graduate.

“We do programs that help students depending on their age and need,” Gibson said.

Peterson said that as part of a highly competitive application process, the Ohio Department of Education awarded funds to districts for establishing and/or continuing 21st Century Community Learning Centers.

“Community learning centers are valuable resources for our local communities,” Peterson said. “These programs offer additional support to ensure students have the best opportunity for success in the classroom and in meeting state academic standards.”

Local learning centers help students meet state and local standards in core subjects, such as reading and math.

They also offer students a broad array of activities complementing their regular academic programs; and provide educational services to the families of participating students.

Peterson represents the 17th District in the Ohio Senate, which encompasses all or part of Clinton, Fayette, Gallia, Highland, Jackson, Lawrence, Pickaway, Pike, Ross, and Vinton counties. He serves as President Pro Tempore of the Senate.