Governor Nathan Deal today announced three award winners for implementation grants and scaling grants administered through the Innovation Fund, a competitive grant program that provides funding to school districts, traditional public schools, charter schools and regional education service agencies to further advance student achievement in Georgia.

“The educators behind these programs are dedicated to piloting innovative approaches to education for use across the state,” said Deal. “I am confident these grants will provide schools and education groups with effective opportunities to transform educational experiences for many of Georgia’s students. Together, we will continue working to ensure that every student receives the tools necessary for academic achievement and lifelong success.”

Implementation grants will provide each winner up to $700,000 over two and a half years to pilot an innovative education program aligned with one of the Innovation Fund priority areas. Scaling grants will provide each winner up to $700,000 over two and a half years to scale a successful existing program to serve more students, teachers or leaders.

The grant award winners and their respective programs are listed below.

Implementation Grants

Clarke County School District

Pathway of Support: Trauma-Informed Care

Crisp County School System

Early SUCCESS: Strategies for Underserved Children, Community Engagement, and Social-emotional Support

Scaling Grant

Westside High School

Bibb County School District

Westside STEAM Magnet High School RTI-Based Personalized Learning Program

The selected programs are aligned with two of the Innovation Fund priority areas: development and replication of blended and personalized learning school models and birth-to-age-eight language and literacy development. Grantees will evaluate the effectiveness of their respective programs and submit findings to the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement (GOSA). The state will use these findings to determine best practices in personalized and blended learning and birth-to-age-eight language and literacy development.

Descriptions of the programs are attached.

About the Innovation Fund

The Innovation Fund invests in public education entities that develop and scale programs that enable Georgia educators to improve student performance and tackle our state’s most significant education challenges. In 2011, the Innovation Fund began as a $19.4 million grant competition created under Georgia’s Race to the Top (RT3) Plan. To continue the Innovation Fund’s work beyond RT3, Deal appropriated state funding for Fiscal Years 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. Since its inception, the Innovation Fund has invested more than $33 million of state and federal funding through 148 grants to school districts, charter schools, postsecondary institutions and nonprofit organizations to pilot innovative education programs, ranging in focus from teacher and leader induction and development to STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) applied learning, blended learning and birth-to-age-eight language and literacy development. More information about the Innovation Fund is available on the GOSA website.