The U.S. Department of Education today awarded 22 grants totaling more than $6 million to improve educational opportunities and achievement for American Indian children in 13 states and to provide professional development for individuals of American Indian descent who serve in the education field.
"Reforming Native education has never been more important," Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said. "To do what is best for Native students, we must collaborate with people who know the students and communities. These grants will help schools offer more opportunities for students and provide training and support to educators and others in the communities that are serving the students."
The Department awarded 12 grants totaling $3,329,938 under the Demonstration Grants for Indian Children program, a competitive discretionary grant program that supports projects to develop, test and demonstrate the effectiveness of services and programs to improve the educational opportunities and achievement of Indian children. This grant focuses on increasing the school readiness skills of three- and four-year-old Indian children to prepare them for successful entry into kindergarten. Program funds also are used to enable Indian high school students to transition successfully to post secondary education by increasing their competency and skills in challenging subjects, including mathematics and science.
Under the Indian Education Professional Development program, 10 grants totaling $3,329,939 are being awarded to increase the number of qualified Indian individuals in professions that serve Indian people and to provide training to qualified Indian individuals to become teachers and administrators.