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Montgomery County School Receives TQP and IAL Grant Funds Totaling $6.6 Million

MCS is excited to announce it has recently received $6.6 million in grants to develop programs in the district to enhance the educational experience of students.

In partnership with Pfeiffer University and Stanly County Schools, MCS will be part of the Teacher Quality Partnership (TQP) program. This program, funded by the US Department of Education for $4.3 million, will benefit the partners by assisting with recruitment, training, support, and retaining of effective teachers particularly those who increase diversity in high-need, high-poverty, rural schools.

During the two year grant, REPERTOIRE (Recruiting Educators, Preparing Educators and Retaining Teachers to Optimize Interest in Rural Education), will establish an on-going model for the district to implement to assist with recruitment, training, and retention. The development of a Teacher Cadet program, available to juniors and seniors interested in teaching will provide insight into the profession along with internship opportunities. MCS will work closely with Pfeiffer University, to better align curriculum to meet the needs of our district providing teaching majors the skills necessary to ensure academic achievement for students. Ongoing support and mentoring will be provided to beginning teachers to ensure success and retention.

“The Teacher Quality Partnership grant is definitely good news for our district in addressing the teacher shortage and ultimately encouraging for the success of our students, the most important goal of our district,” stated Superintendent, Dr. Dale Ellis. “Better prepared teachers means better academic success for students. We are especially excited about the Teacher Cadet program and the ability to “grow our own” students.”

MCS is also excited to announce it will receive a $2.25 million Innovation Approaches to Literacy (IAL) grant, which is federally-funded through the US Department of Education. The grant will impact over 2,000 Pre-K to 6th grade students and families, 105 teachers, 9 media specialists, and 8 school leaders annually.

LEARN, Literacy Expansion Across Rural North Carolina, will be used to provide and expand services that directly address the literacy skills development and achievement needs of our students. The goal of the program is to integrate technology to ensure rural access, strengthen literacy development in the classroom, and to provide high quality books and family literacy activities.

Several opportunities to increase literacy exposure will be provided by the grant through the development of lending libraries for families and students, providing opportunities for students to receive free, age appropriate books in both English and Spanish, extending library hours before and after school, updating school library collections including MakerSpaces for collaborative creating, inventing, and learning, building free little libraries throughout the community, and developing a Summer Literacy Camp. The district will develop a Mobile Literacy Lab by outfitting an existing school bus to extend literacy and STEM in the community providing internet access throughout the school year and during the summer. Teachers, through the grant, will also be provided with additional professional literacy learning opportunities as well as new literacy curriculum. An additional full-time licensed media specialist will be employed by the grant to provide support to existing media staff.

Many community agencies and organizations have agreed to support the literacy efforts established by the grant including Montgomery County Public Library, Montgomery County Health Department, Montgomery County Partnership for Children, district high schools and media staff, local law enforcement, Food King, Montgomery Herald, Rotary Club of Troy, local barbershops, and other local businesses.

“We are excited about the potential LEARN has to improve the literacy skills of our students,” stated Dr. Ellis. “Literacy is an invaluable tool for the success of our students, and Montgomery County Schools will always make it a priority to develop opportunities that assist with the academic success of our students.”