PPSB receives $1.2 mil. literacy grantMay 16th, 2012 | By Terri Sercovich | Category: school news
The Plaquemines Parish School District was awarded a $1.2 million literacy grant which will be doled out over the next five years, said Alberta Cousson, Director of Secondary Education and Instructional Technology for the Plaquemines Parish School System at the May 7 PPSB meeting.
The Striving Readers Comprehensive Literacy Grant (SRCL) is funded through the Federal Department of Education and was given to six eligible states, including Louisiana. The Louisiana State Department of education received their $148 million federal grant last month. Sixty districts across the state applied to receive funds from the SCRL grant and Plaquemines Parish was one of 17 selected.
The primary goal of the grant is to raise literacy levels of not only current K – 12 students, but in head start and preschool students— future students of Plaquemines Parish.
As part of the grant’s stipulations, PPSB must hire a Literacy Intergration Specialist and a Literacy Interventionist, Cousson stated.
The primary function of the new positions is to assist teachers in all subject areas, effectively increase students’ literacy skills.
“Teachers will learn to teach reading across all content areas, and I think it’s going to make a big difference in the literary skills of our students in Plaquemines Parish,” Cousson stated.
Cousson explained to the board that she recognizes funds will be tight over the next few years due to the impending reduction of MFP funding by the state, but the creation and partial funding of these two positions was integral to receiving the grant money.
“The grant will pay 75 percent of these salaries and we’re asking the board to pick up the other 25 percent,” Cousson explained.
School Board President William Mertz questioned how the positions would be funded after the five years, when the grant money is fully dispersed. Cousson explained that another stipulation for the grant was that the district has to show sustainability, and that after a meeting with Superintendent Denis Rousselle, it was determined that enough money could be pooled from different areas to supplement the salary costs that the grant did not cover.