Hofmeister announces Public School Classroom Support Grants totaling $70,000
The Oklahoma State Department of Education (OSDE) has awarded 50 Oklahoma teachers with grants of up to $5,000 to support their classrooms. This is the first time OSDE has administered the Public School Classroom Support Grants. State law allows an individual or corporate taxpayer to designate a portion of a state tax refund to contribute to a fund for the grants – awarded annually on a statewide competitive basis.
The 2019-20 grants totaled $70,000.
“We are grateful for the opportunity to support the classroom needs of some of the state’s most dedicated and innovative teachers,” said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister. “As we reviewed nearly a hundred grant applications, we were excited to see many funding requests for collaborative learning. We know from research that interactive classrooms foster student understanding and enable individualized instruction that meets kids where they are. This grant, funded by the generous donations of Oklahoma taxpayers, will directly benefit thousands of Oklahoma students.”
The grant’s annual area of focus will be supporting the needs of English learners, plus a subject area aligned with the state textbook adoption cycle –mathematics, this year – to ensure grant funds are spent on materials that supplement textbooks and offer collaborative opportunities or alternative methods of instruction. Awardees, who represented districts around the state, were determined on the basis of student instruction and potential student benefit.
Central High Public Schools teachers Brigit Minden and Melanie Snodgrass were awarded $1,901.60 for activity tables. Their grant application references the need to “encourage productive struggle and mathematical discourse among students.”
“We feel the tables will help our students think differently about how a math classroom can look and feel,” said Minden. “We want to encourage discussion and collaboration at all levels of math.”
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