An AJC news story on the support the Atlanta business community gave to APS school chief Beverly Hall cites a $22 million donation for science education to the district from the General Electric Foundation.
After seeing that amount, a teacher from a different system sent me this note, which I think is worth discussing here:
Is there a way you can learn more about the General Electric Foundation donation of $22 million given to APS, such as what the money was used for or how it was appropriated?
As a 7th grade science teacher in a district that has not had new science materials/textbooks in over 10 years, this amount given for “science education” is unfathomable to me. I am extremely proud of my students’ CRCT scores by the way, but it seems like having that amount of money to spend in science classrooms should have yielded amazing experiences for the students.
Or to put it more bluntly, how can you spend $22 million and not be able to pass a science CRCT test?
APS was also among the 13 Georgia school systems that benefited from the PRISM program, a five-year, $35 million grant awarded to the University System of Georgia in 2003 from the National Science Foundation to increase science and mathematics achievement in pre-k through high school.
Given all the grant money that poured into APS, did any of it make a difference?
(I have to add a note here that shortly after I posted this, I received a Twitter message from a reader that GE only paid APS when it met the benchmarks built into the grant. GE suspended payments in 2010 so the full $22 million was not paid.)
–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog