Stephens Co. Schools After Grant

The Stephens County School System is joining with eight other school systems in Georgia to pursue a federal grant that would result in millions of dollars coming back to each of the school systems involved.

The nine school systems are applying for what is called a “Race to the Top” system grant.

According to Stephens County School Superintendent Sherrie Whiten, this is not the same as the “Race to the Top” grants that were awarded previously to some systems in Georgia.

Whiten said this is a new and different grant.

“It focuses in on staff development,” said Whiten. “It would give teachers five days probably during the summer and those would be focused on professional development and it is all centered around how you personalize the learning environment for students in an attempt to deepen student learning.”

Besides Stephens County, the other school systems involved in the application are Banks County, Dawson County, Hart County, Lumpkin County, Towns County, Union County, Commerce City, and Butts County.

Whiten said the grant would give the nine systems a total of $30 million over five years, which would translate into just over $3 million over five years for Stephens County.

According to officials, the proposed project will assist systems in implementation of state-wide initiatives, but does not impose additional initiatives on systems or schools.

Whiten said they hope to hear about the grant in the next couple of months.