The Ossining Union Free School District is getting a cash infusion. The State Education Department is pouring $529,000 into Ossining schools via a grant. The money comes from New York state's Race to the Top federal funds.
“We’ll be using these grant funds to provide professional development that we would otherwise not be able to offer,” said OUFSD Deputy Superintendent Ray Sanchez.
Ossining received the cash as part of the Strengthening Teacher and Leader Effectiveness program. State Education Commissioner John King says the grants are part of the Board of Regents’ statewide efforts to strengthen educator effectiveness at all levels. The program focuses on helping to advance science, technology, engineering and math education, as well as supporting English language learners. Another goal of the program is to improve the equitable distribution of effective teachers and leaders throughout the State of New York.
“We are a community of learners and we value professional development, so we’re very excited to have received this grant,” said Sanchez. “The grant will enable us to build on our success by providing enhanced support to our teachers and leaders as we meet the requirements of the Common Core standards and other changes in education.”
48 other districts and charter schools received money under the Strengthening Teacher and Leader Effectiveness program. School and districts that have at least 25% of students who are low-income are eligible for the grants.
Ossining Union Free School District officials say they plan on using part of the money to "train 60 teachers in a research-based approach to making content comprehensible to English language learners." In addition, 30 teachers will be trained in co-teaching. The co-teaching effort will "improve effectiveness in inclusion and collaborative classes where two teachers work together to instruct students with various needs," according to OUFSD officials.