Ypsilanti, Willow Run schools receive piece of $24M to boost student achievement
Ypsilanti and Willow Run school districts will receive a portion of $24 million in federal grant money to help increase student achievement.
The grant, called think.respect, is part of the federal Safe and Supportive Schools initiative and is aimed at improving students’ learning by coordinating academics with interventions to support students’ social, emotional and physical health needs.
For most children, their overall health impacts their performance in the classroom, and health is determined by many factors — neighborhood safety, bullying, mental health, alcohol use, obesity, race relations and other reasons, according to the MDE’s Office of School Support Services.
“This grant will show us how we can help students address those problems and feel secure in the school environment,” School Support Services director Kyle Guerrant said Monday in a news release.
State Superintendent Michael Flanagan called the think.respect concept a holistic approach to education.
“We need to better understand health inequities and how they affect school culture and climate,” he said in a statement.
Flanagan also stated the 23 Michigan schools awarded the grant money will be able to select the interventions, from an approved list, that they would like to implement, including: anti-bullying programs, restorative justice, parent and youth engagement, the Michigan Model, Eliminating Barriers for Learning and community involvement.
Other Michigan school districts that received a think.respect grant include Detroit, Flint, Wyoming, Saginaw, Benton Harbor and Lansing.