5 Million Dollar Grant

The Sierra Vista Unified School District (SVUSD) is thrilled to announce that it has been awarded a groundbreaking $5,000,000 grant from the Office of the Governor Katie Hobbs. The grant, aptly named the "Negative Impacts: Educational Disparities and Teacher Professional Development Grant," represents a significant milestone in the district's commitment to addressing academic and social disparities while enhancing teacher professional development opportunities.

This prestigious grant, which was part of a highly competitive process with over $160,000,000 in funding requests submitted, shines a spotlight on the district's innovative proposals to address various challenges within the education system. The Office of the Governor Katie Hobbs had $50,000,000 available to distribute, making SVUSD's successful application even more commendable.

Academic and Learning Loss Solutions

One of the primary focuses of the grant is to combat academic and learning loss among students. To achieve this goal, SVUSD plans to implement a comprehensive K-12 intervention program utilizing the Dreambox platform. This systematic intervention program will be a valuable tool in helping students catch up and succeed in their academic pursuits. The Dreambox program has already been implemented during SVUSD’s Summer Academy as well as in tutoring programs at three of our schools.  Being able to expand the program district wide will make a substantial impact for our students’ academic success.

In addition to Dreambox, SVUSD is dedicated to fostering an environment of creativity and exploration. With this grant, the district will launch a series of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) initiatives in partnership with state STEAM programs. Several of the district's schools are already transforming their libraries into 21st century media & maker spaces as part of another project, with STEAM education built into the spaces. These programs and spaces aim to inspire students and provide them with the necessary skills to excel in these critical fields, preparing them for the future job market.

Addressing Social Services

Another vital aspect of SVUSD's grant proposal is the creation of a Behavior Support Program. This program will cater to the needs of both general and special education students. By offering targeted support and guidance, SVUSD aims to create a more inclusive and supportive learning environment for all its students.

Furthermore, SVUSD recognizes the importance of fostering a safe and inclusive school culture. To this end, the district plans to purchase the Olweus Bullying Prevention program and provide training for all eight schools within its jurisdiction. This initiative will help create a safe and respectful atmosphere where students can thrive without fear of bullying or harassment.

Teacher and Teacher Paraprofessional Professional Development

Quality education begins with well-prepared educators. SVUSD is dedicated to enhancing the skills and knowledge of its teaching staff. The grant will enable the creation of a Professional Development (PD) Mini Grant program, providing additional funding for sites to attend professional development activities that align with the school's integrated action plan. This initiative will empower teachers to continuously improve their teaching methods and stay up-to-date with the latest educational trends.

Additionally, the grant will support teachers' educational aspirations by covering college coursework expenses for the FY24 school year. Approved courses will encompass administration, special education, and other areas identified by the district as crucial for enhancing the educational experience for students.

Assistant Superintendent Terri Romo, who wrote the grant application for SVUSD, expressed immense gratitude for this transformative grant, saying, "This grant represents a turning point for Sierra Vista Unified School District. We are deeply honored and excited to receive this funding, which will enable us to address pressing issues in education while bolstering teacher professional development. It reflects our unwavering commitment to providing the best possible education for our students."

The Sierra Vista Unified School District is set to embark on an exciting journey towards a more supportive and enriching educational experience for its students. The Negative Impacts: Educational Disparities and Teacher Professional Development Grant is not only a significant financial boost but also a testament to the district's dedication to fostering a brighter future for all students. SVUSD looks forward to implementing these initiatives and working towards a more inclusive and prosperous educational landscape.