JDCSD receives $2M grant

Published 11:58 am Friday, February 22, 2019

The Jefferson Davis County School District has been awarded
approximately $2.2 million Innovative Approaches to Literacy Program
grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Academic
This grant, awarded to only 40 school districts nationwide in 2018,
supports innovative literacy instruction that promotes skill
development in children from birth through grade 12 from low-income
These new funds enable JDCSD to prioritize early literacy, boost
students’ literacy skills, provide access to a wide range of
resources, engage families and the community in student learning,
improve teacher efficacy, expand after school and summer school
programs, and integrate literacy as a top priority across content
“If there is ever a magical solution in education, then it would be
literacy,” said JDC Superintendent Will Russell.
“The Innovative Approaches to Literacy Grant is very competitive, and
we as a district consider it to be a blessing for our communities and
With the IAL Program grant, JDCSD will implement Academic Innovations
for Reading Success, a strategic and sustainable framework designed to
address the identified instructional, academic, resource, and
engagement gaps that currently exist in the district.
Over the span of three years, JDCSD will work with Scholastic, the
global children’s publishing, education and media company, to improve
literacy and support learning through key initiatives including:
comprehensive literacy model,  professional learning, access to
resources,  STEM (cience, technology, engineering and mathematics)
integration, extended day and summer camps and family and community
“The team is looking forward to partnering with the families,
communities and schools to provide literacy support for the children,”
said Karey Alegria, AIRS project director.
“When we all work together to provide significant literacy experiences
for the children, they have a greater opportunity to enter the third
grade as proficient readers, which will make it more likely that they
will succeed and graduate high school. With this literacy grant, the
district will make a remarkable difference in student achievement and
in our communities.”
“Jefferson Davis County School District stands out as a model district
for their dedication and innovation around literacy,” said Michael
Haggen, Chief Academic Officer, Scholastic Education. “It is important
that the great work being done in rural districts is acknowledged and
this prestigious grant will help ensure other schools throughout the
country can follow JDCSD’s lead. Scholastic is proud to partner with
JDCSD in building a strong literacy program and bringing their vision
to life by providing high-quality resources to the children, families,
and teachers in the community.”

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