Magnolia students will be among those in Arkansas receiving the benefits of enhanced literacy programs thanks to the distribution of $5.5 million in federal funds this year.
The U.S. Department of Education previously awarded the Arkansas Department of Education a five-year grant totaling $38 million (the most allowed under the grant) for the Arkansas Comprehensive Literacy State Development Program, which will improve literacy outcomes for students in grades Pre-K through 12.
Schools and districts will use the grants to do the following: develop and implement a comprehensive literacy instruction plan across all content areas; provide high-quality professional development opportunities for educators; provide assistance to leadership regarding the support, development, administration, and evaluation of high-quality literacy initiatives; coordinate the involvement of early childhood educators; foster collaboration among various stakeholders; and build a culture of reading.
Ninety-five percent of the funds will be sub-granted to schools, districts, and community partners.
Grants were awarded to these schools in the Magnolia School District:
Central Elementary, $35,000
East Side Elementary, $45,000
Magnolia High School, $30,000
Magnolia Junior High School, $35,000
Other South Arkansas schools receiving grants:
Dumas School District, $60,000
El Dorado School District – Barton Junior High, $34,897.40. El Dorado High, $51,730.60. Hugh Goodwin Elementary, $24,799.50. Northwest Elementary, $24,799.50. Yocum Elementary, $29,982.25. Washington Middle School, $32,614.85
Hamburg School District, $85,041.14
Hampton School District, $30,000
Hermitage School District, $25,000
Hope School District, $100,000
Junction City School District, $36,926.28
Lake Village Lakeside School District, $47,500
McGehee School District, $50,000
Prescott School District, $50,000
Star City School District, $85,719.97
Strong-Huttig School District, $17,570
Texarkana School District, $99,500
Since being awarded the grant, ADE accepted applications for the Successful Outcomes for Arkansas Readers subgrant.
An additional $1.2 million was awarded to the Arkansas Imagination Library, a program under Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library that provides free books to families.
“We were extremely excited to award these much-needed funds to deserving schools and districts that submitted comprehensive plans to improve literacy at their schools and in their communities,” ADE Secretary Johnny Key said.
“I cannot stress enough the importance of building a strong foundation in reading, and through this grant, educators will take their literacy programs to the next level, resulting in increased student access to books, robust reading programs, and an improved culture of reading."