Hawaii to receive nearly $1.8M for low-performing schools

The U.S. Dept. of Education announced Thursday that Hawaii will receive nearly $1.8 million in federal funding to help turn around low-performing schools.

Hawaii is one of 10 states to receive money from the department’s School Improvement Grants program.

“When schools fail, our children and neighborhoods suffer,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. “Turning around our lowest-performing schools is hard work but it’s our responsibility, and represents a tremendous opportunity to improve the life chances of children. We owe it to our children, their families and the broader community. These School Improvement Grants are helping some of the lowest-achieving schools provide a better education for students who need it the most.”

The Hawaii DOE is inviting all “priority” schools to apply for the three-year grant, including Waianae Elementary, Hawaii School for the Deaf and the Blind, Kamaile Academy, Kalihikai Elementary, Hakipuu Learning Center, Kekaha Elementary, Dole Middle,  Olomana, Ka Umeke Kaeo, Nawahiokalaniopuu Iki and Niihau o Kekaha.

The other states receiving awards are Louisiana, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Montana, North Dakota, Nevada, Oregon and Texas.

School Improvement Grants are awarded to State Educational Agencies (SEAs) that then make competitive subgrants to school districts that demonstrate the greatest need for the funds and the strongest commitment to provide adequate resources to substantially raise student achievement in their lowest-performing schools.

Under the Obama administration, the SIG program has invested up to $2 million per school at more than 1,500 of the country’s lowest-performing schools. Early findings show positive momentum and progress in many SIG schools. Findings also show that many schools receiving SIG funding are improving, and some of the greatest gains have been in small towns and rural communities.

For more on the program, click here.

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