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$1.5M Federal Grant Awarded to Newport Schools

The Newport Independent School District has been awarded a $1.5 million federal grant that will be used to purchase laptop computers, hire a math specialist and provide professional development and instructional resources for the District's teachers and staff.

Approximately $500,000 of the $1.5 million School Improvement Grant, which was announced by the Kentucky Department of Education, will be used to purchase Apple MacBook laptop computers for every Newport High School Student during the 2016-17 school year.

"We are always looking for ways to be innovative and to identify additional resources that continues the Newport Independent Schools on the road to increased academic achievement," said District Curriculum Coordinator Diane Hatfield. "This grant, and the computers we purchase with the grant, allows us to go to the next level students as we prepare them for college and career readiness.

"When you can provide resources and empower teachers, students learn," Hatfield said. "This will sustain what is already being done at Newport High School."

Hatfield wrote the 148-page grant with Paul Baker, the district's Youth Service Coordinator.

"Paul has a degree in journalism, and he's a very good writer," Hatfield said. "We have collaborated on a number of successful grants. We're a good team."

Newport Independent School District Superintendent Kelly Middleton said he was proud of his staff for winning the grant and excited for the students who will receive the MacBooks. He also said the grant relates to the mission statement of the district and high school - "preparing students for the future" - and the District's vision statement that "every child will be proficient and prepared for life, work and citizenship in the 21st Century."

"We currently have iPads for all students in grades 7 through 12 and five for each classroom at Newport Primary and Intermediate School," Middleton said. "Thanks to this grant, we will now be able to offer iPads for students in grades 3 through 6 and offer even more iPads to students in our primary school."

- Staff report

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