McKeesport, April 26, 2012 – State Senator Jim Brewster has announced Keystones to Opportunity (KtO) grants totaling over $ 587,000 for two area school districts.

Brewster said the state Department of Education has approved proposals submitted by McKeesport Area School District for $529,260; and the New Kensington-Arnold School District for $58,000.

“I am pleased that these KtO grant dollars have been awarded to area schools,” Brewster said. “In these tough budget times, every supplemental dollar for education is a big help.”

The KtO grants are part of Pennsylvania’s award of $38 million through the federal Striving Readers Comprehensive Literacy Program grant. State Education officials have identified three keystones to opportunity: 1) improving literacy learning outcomes and dramatically increasing reading achievement among students in danger of academic failure; 2) creating a culture of data-driven decision making by supporting implementation on Bernhardt’s Multiple Measures Data logic model at the state, regional and local levels; and 3) infusing digital technology and Universal Design for Learning that provides teachers with examples of how technology tools can provide multiple pathways to express and represent information.

Brewster said the state is committed to aligning literacy instruction and state initiatives to help schools strengthen local literacy initiatives, provide structure, and to support and provide tools for schools to use reliable data to guide instructional decision making in language and literacy.

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