$186 million from the U.S. Department of Education

President Clinton has announced the award of nearly $186 million in new grants to 1,500 schools in 48 states for the Education Department’s 21st Century Community Learning Centers program.

The program enables schools to provide high-quality, after-school community learning centers. The school-based centers made possible by this latest round of grants will provide enriched learning opportunities to an additional 275,000 children outside of regular school hours and during the summer, ED said.

Technology education is one of eight types of activities the grants supported. The others are youth tutoring and homework help; academic enrichment; college prep activities; enrichment through the arts, including chorus, band, drama, and art; drug and violence prevention counseling; supervised recreational opportunities; and services for youth with disabilities.

ED particularly sought the participation of school districts, collaborating with community-based organizations, that serve communities with conditions associated with high dropout rates—such as high poverty, weak economic and community infrastructures, large or growing numbers of limited English-proficient students and adults, and low levels of parental education. ED, the National Community Education Association, the National Association for Bilingual Education, and the C.S. Mott Foundation hosted a series of 64 state and regional training sessions to assist applicants to plan their programs.

The average grant award is nearly $600,000 and supports three or four centers. New grantees, like their earlier counterparts, will receive training funded by the Mott Foundation, which is providing $115 million over six years to enhance the quality and effectiveness of the 21st Century Community Learning Centers, as well as other after-school activities.

The program is authorized under Title X, Part I, of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. For fiscal 2001, President Clinton wants to double the program’s funding to $1 billion. Additional information, including the grant application package and supporting materials, can be obtained via the internet, by telephone at (800) USA-LEARN, or by eMail at 21stCCLC@ed.gov.

http://www.ed.gov/21stcclc

$1.4 million from the 3M Foundation

The 3M Foundation, the charitable arm of 3M (Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Co.), has announced $1,377,500 in grants for K-12 education. The grants include:

• A $1 million partnership with American Association of School Librarians, through which 3M will donate its Library Detection Systems to eligible schools across the country;

• $160,000 to Metropolitan State University for its Urban Teacher Education Program;

• $82,500 to 3M TWIST (Teachers Working in Science & Technology);

• $75,000 to Math Counts; and

• $60,000 to 3M STEP (Science Training Encouragement Program).

For additional information, visit the foundation’s web site.

http://www.3m.com/profile/community/ index.html

$1.3 million in software

from Microsoft Corp.

Microsoft has announced that 48 middle and high school teachers nationwide will receive more than $1.3 million in software licenses as part of the company’s Curriculum Grant Program. The initiative is designed to help educators create leading-edge information technology curricula and courses to prepare students for college and a technology-driven work force.

The two-year competitive grants, which award from $10,380 to $41,575 in software licenses per school, include the latest technology tools used in the information technology industry, including Visual Basic, Visual C++, and Visual J++ development systems; Office 2000 Developer Edition; the Visual InterDev web development system; and Windows 98 or 2000 Workstation operating systems, if needed.

The awards allow many teachers to offer students advanced computer science, programming, and web development courses that otherwise might not have been possible. As part of the award, educators agree to post current curricula and course materials on the company’s MainFunction web site (http://www.mainfunction.com), so other educators can share the resources.

http://www.microsoft.com