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Schools apply for federal dollars; await word from MDE

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The Minnesota Department of Education reported 26 schools have applied for the federal government's $34 million School Improvement Grant.

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Applications for the grant were due July 1. Four schools declined to apply. The grants will be awarded on Sunday, Aug. 1

According to the MDE, department staff will review the applications within two weeks and meet with schools for clarifications.

As part of the application process, schools had to design ways to meet the shortcomings identified in a report on the school by Cambridge Consulting, a vendor chosen by the Department of Education. To accomplish this, schools had to choose one of four turn-around strategies prescribed by the U.S. Department of Education.

Cass Lake-Bena Secondary, Ponemah Elementary, Red Lake Senior High and Waubun Secondary each applied for the federal grant using the transformational model.

E Transformation model: Replace the principal and improve the school through comprehensive curriculum reform, professional development, extending learning time and other strategies.

E Restart model: Convert a school or close it and re-open as a charter school or under an education management organization.

E School closure: Close the school and send the students to higher-achieving schools in the district.

E Turnaround Model: Replace the principal, screen existing school staff and rehire no more than half the teachers; adopt a new governance structure; and improve the school through curriculum reform, professional development, extended learning time and other strategies.

The Minnesota Department of Education reported 26 schools have applied for the federal government's $34 million School Improvement Grant.

Applications for the grant were due July 1. Four schools declined to apply. The grants will be awarded on Sunday, Aug. 1

According to the MDE, department staff will review the applications within two weeks and meet with schools for clarifications.

As part of the application process, schools had to design ways to meet the shortcomings identified in a report on the school by Cambridge Consulting, a vendor chosen by the Department of Education. To accomplish this, schools had to choose one of four turn-around strategies prescribed by the U.S. Department of Education.

Cass Lake-Bena Secondary, Ponemah Elementary, Red Lake Senior High and Waubun Secondary each applied for the federal grant using the transformational model.

- Transformation model: Replace the principal and improve the school through comprehensive curriculum reform, professional development, extending learning time and other strategies.

- Restart model: Convert a school or close it and re-open as a charter school or under an education management organization.

- School closure: Close the school and send the students to higher-achieving schools in the district.

- Turnaround Model: Replace the principal, screen existing school staff and rehire no more than half the teachers; adopt a new governance structure; and improve the school through curriculum reform, professional development, extended learning time and other strategies.

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