Department of Defense awards district grant for innovative academic project

October 31, 2022

Richland School District Two is receiving a $2 million grant to implement the Premier Pathways for Student Success project in 24 schools. The Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) grant will affect some 3,733 military-connected students at 12 elementary, seven middle and five high schools.

Dr. Arlene Bakutes, Director for Grant Initiatives for the district, says the purpose of the project is to focus on the components necessary for students to achieve academic success, excel in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, and experience mindful well-being.

“The military community is highly mobile and will benefit from this initiative because it provides a continuum of learning that addresses core content gaps that occur when students relocate to new cities and schools,” said Dr. Bakutes.

The grant will provide resources that promote student achievement in the core curricular areas, promote virtual learning to increase educational program cohesiveness, and provide multi-tiered systems of support learning environments so that transitioning military-connected students are afforded the opportunity to increase educational continuity. Using a comprehensive evidence-based design, the project will develop future citizens so that students fulfill their potential. This project will also extend AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination), a college and career readiness program.

The participating schools are Bethel-Hanberry Elementary, Bookman Road Elementary, Bridge Creek Elementary, Catawba Trail Elementary, Lake Carolina Lower, Lake Carolina Upper, Langford Elementary, Polo Road Elementary, Pontiac Elementary, Rice Creek Elementary, Round Top Elementary, Sandlapper Elementary, Blythewood Middle, Dent Middle, E. L. Wright Middle,

Kelly Mill Med Pro Middle, Longleaf Middle, Muller Road Middle, Summit Parkway Middle, Blythewood High, Richland Northeast High, Ridge View High, Spring Valley High and Westwood High.