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$300,000 Awarded for Newport School Programs

The Newport Independent School District has been awarded a three-year, $300,000 federal grant to continue its before, after, and summer school programs, continuing a nearly 20-year string of winning the competitive grant.

The 21st Century Community Learning Centers grant is a U.S. Department of Education program that is administered by the Kentucky Department of Education and has three primary goals for students in kindergarten through eighth grade: 

  • ​Increasing students academic achievement through a emphasis on reading, math and science
  • Enhancing student's non-cognitive self-esteem
  • Increasing parent engagement.

Acting with co-applicant Children, Inc. of Covington, the grant proposal was written by Newport Middle School Youth Services Coordinator Paul Baker and district Curriculum Coordinator Diane Hatfield.

The program serves hundreds of kindergarten through eighth-grade Newport students.

"It's all about three vitally important aspects of education," Baker said in a news release. "Academic performance, increasing attendance and decreasing behavior problems."

"This is also an opportunity," Hatfield added, "to provide families with some extra support for academic, physical and emotional well-being."

The before school Movin’ in the Morning program provides students in kindergarten through fifth grade with breakfast, physical activity and time in the computer lab to work on reading and math.

During the after school program, students are offered homework assistance and can participate in activities that include clubs devoted to archery, cooking, photography, Lego's and more.  And in partnership with Brighton Center, Inc. of Newport, the program also includes a Youth Leadership Development program for fifth- through eighth-grade students. 

The four-week summer school program is administered in concert with Children, Inc. and includes daily activities focused on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).  

Newport Schools received its first 21st Century Grant in 1999 with a $1 million award.

"In Newport, we are about kids, and the ability to offer quality before and after school educational programs along with summer school activities  makes the 21st century grant one of the most impactful and sought after grants in the United States," said Newport Independent Schools Superintendent Kelly Middleton, in the announcement. "I would like to thank Paul Baker and Diane Hatfield for their time and attention to grants that truly benefit our Newport students."

-Staff report

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