FRANKFORT, Ky. (KT) – The Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education will award up to $500,000 in competitive grants this fall to help educator preparation programs increase the number of K-12 teachers in Kentucky from underrepresented groups.
The funding program, announced Monday, is a part of the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund, or GEER II, which aims to help campuses mitigate the impact of COVID-19. The funds are available through a partnership with the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet and originate from the federal CARES Act.
“The future of our commonwealth is in Kentucky’s classrooms,” said Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman, who is also secretary of the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. “I am excited to see our education preparation programs use this funding to recruit, train and support a talented and diverse workforce.”
The Council on Postsecondary Education, or CPE, is targeting Kentucky public colleges and universities seeking to partner with an agency or organization, such as a local education agency, to establish a strong collaboration for recruitment of teacher candidates. The higher education agency will award the funds over the course of two years in two phases, planning and implementation, to improve the sustainability of diversity and recruitment efforts.
CPE President Aaron Thompson said the grants will fund direct student support rather than personnel or administrative costs.
“We’re very pleased to have this opportunity at this pivotal time to bolster our educator preparation programs,” he said. “Increasing diversity among our educators in K-12 schools is crucial for the success of all our students.”
All of Kentucky’s public colleges and universities are eligible to apply. Campuses can each receive up to $100,000 to create new programs or expand existing efforts.
The application deadline for the Commonwealth Educator Diversity Program is Sept. 17. For more information on the grant program, including the criteria that will be used to score the applications, you can go to http://cpe.ky.gov/news/rfp_documents/commonwealthdiversitygrant.pdf.