Pawtucket School Department Receives $20,000 Verizon Innovative Learning Grant

Pawtucket, RI: The Pawtucket School Department is pleased to announce that it has received $20,000 for the Verizon Innovative Learning Grant to develop STEM programming options at the district’s alternative high school, the Pawtucket Learning Academy (PLA). The check presentation ceremony will take place at the Pawtucket School Department’s Administration Building, located at 286 Main Street, Pawtucket, on Thursday, January 28th at 1pm.
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The funds from the Verizon Innovative Learning grant will be used to establish a robotics program and to create a makerspace for the PLA. In the makerspace, students will have access to mentors, program tools, and robotics materials for hands-on experiences that will foster the development of ideas and improve problem-solving skills. This makerspace will be used during the school day by PLA students, and will be open to other Pawtucket students and parents during the after school hours.
This project is an excellent opportunity for the PLA to close the achievement and STEM resource gaps between its students and their counterparts at the two comprehensive high schools, and will break down the barriers between schools within the district by serving as a common space accessible during after school hours to all members of the Pawtucket School community.
Some of the funding will be used to offer voluntary Professional Development and materials to elementary classroom teachers and afterschool staff to enhance skills and increase confidence to teach science using the Boston Museum of Science’s award-winning curriculum framework.
All projects will be completed in partnership with the Pawtucket Child Opportunity Zone (COZ). The Pawtucket COZ was established within the Pawtucket School Department in 1994, and has grown to service fifteen of the district’s schools. The COZ is a full service community school model that integrates health, education and social services so that children come to school ready to learn and leave school ready to be productive citizens.

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