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School district awarded $10.3 million grant

October 5, 2017
Special to THE CITIZEN ( , Lehigh Acres Citizen

The School District of Lee County is one of 32 school systems in the United States awarded a grant from the 2017 Magnet Schools Assistance Program.

The $10 million Magnet grant will allow the district to implement engaging academic and arts attractor programs at Harns Marsh Middle School and Lehigh Acres Middle School, as well as Oak Hammock Middle School in Fort Myers, over a five-year period.

"I am so proud that our organization has been recognized as deserving of these funds," Superintendent Dr. Greg Adkins said in a prepared statement. "The programs we will now be able to offer at these schools will provide excellent academic opportunities, increase rigor, personalize education and prepare our students to compete in the 21st century."

Harns Marsh Middle will use a portion of the grant money for its Cambridge AICE - Advanced International Certificate of Education - Program, which provides a globally-recognized international curriculum. The school will also enhance its arts program to ignite creativity in its 1,138 students.

"This will help our school have a level playing field by affording all of our students the opportunity to engage in high-level, rigorous learning experiences enhanced through the performing and visual arts," Principal Linda Maere said in the statement.

Lehigh Acres Middle will implement Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics - STEAM - to provide students with meaningful and engaging coursework to enhance left and right brain learning. Principal Neketa Watson explained that she is thrilled about the opportunity.

"With the help of the grant, we can now implement a world-class program for our scholars," she said in the statement.

Oak Hammock Middle will enhance its academic program through arts integration, in order to attract students of diverse populations. The staff is committed to incorporating the arts into every classroom on campus to ignite student learning.

The grant will bring additional arts personnel and educational equipment to the schools, such as science lab supplies, theater costumes and props, pottery wheels, 3-D printers, musical instruments and LEGO robotics kits.

Harns Marsh Middle School is at 1820 23rd St. W.

Lehigh Acres Middle School is at 104 Arthur Ave.

Source: School District of Lee County



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