A state Department of Education grant in support of a University of North Georgia partnership with area schools has been increased from a projected $270,000 to an official amount of more than $320,000.
The grant, which is awarded through the federal Mathematics and Science Partnership program, funded $138,483 this past year and will fund $187,804 this year.
The project being funded by the grant, known as PSCI-Train, was created to increase elementary students’ science achievement by strengthening their teachers’ content knowledge and teaching skills. The teachers learn instruction methods from UNG faculty, and the program involves the Hall County School District, Lumpkin County Schools, the Dahlonega-Lumpkin Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce.
Improving college readiness via K-12 partnerships is a key aspect of UNG’s Complete College Georgia plan, a statewide initiative to increase the percentage of the population with some level of college completion to meet projected workforce needs.
“Children are naturally curious, and hands-on activities encourage problem-solving skills that teach independence and perseverance,” said Carol Duncan, who teaches first grade at Chestnut Mountain Creative School of Inquiry in Hall County. “Project-based learning is here to stay, and we are appreciative of the exciting materials we have been exposed to during these sessions.”