Manila School awarded $20,000 grant

Tuesday, August 18, 2015
Robin Baugher, Federal Program Coordinate, and Jason Baltimore, Technology Coordinator, are pleased to have the new computer coding class being added to the Manila High School curriculum. MacBook Airs are being purchased through a $20,000 grant awarded to the district.

Robin Baugher, Federal Program coordinator for the Manila School District, applied for and received a $20,000 grant. The funding is part of the computer science initiative made available as part of Governor Asa Hutchinson's push to have computer science in all high schools.

The grant is through the Arkansas Department of Education. Districts could apply for up to $20,000.

Ms. Baugher's application was for $19,992.88.

"We were very pleased to be awarded the full amount," Ms. Baugher said.

Gerri McCann, high school teacher who will be teaching the computer science class, helped gather the information needed for the application.

The new class offered will be the essentials of computer programming.

The funds will provide for professional development for the teacher and $14,000 for MacBook Airs, text books, and student incentives such as attending coding competition events.

"The language of Code is like learning a foreign language," Ms. Baugher said. "It is the future for our students."

The school is in the process of ordering the equipment and getting ready for the classes.

"Our goal is to start the new program in the high school and eventually introduce it in the lower grades to our younger students," Ms. Baugher said.

Superintendent Pam Castor expressed her appreciation to the staff for their work on the grant process.

"Computer coding will help prepare our students for future employment," Ms. Castor said. "Technology field is ever expanding in the number of jobs available. This will help prepare our students for expanding their knowledge for future education or the workforce."

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