Imagine Schools to use $300,000 grant for new materials, programs

INDIAN RIVER COUNTY — Imagine Schools at South Vero will soon receive $300,000 worth of new books, tools and other materials to enhance students’ education.

The charter school was recently awarded the state-funded grant and expects to use the money to purchase the items this week. Officials at Imagine Schools, a “C” school, hope the new materials will help students perform better and raise the school’s grade.

“One of our goals is to be an ‘A’ school,” new Principal Jonathan Sternberg said. “This is well within our reach. We want to make sure we reach that goal next year.”

Part of the funds will go toward the “Go Math” series program for the students in kindergarten through fifth grade. The middle school will also receive an enhanced math program.

An interactive science program with labs is also on the list for purchase, as are fiction and non-fiction novels for those in fourth grade and higher.

“These tools will definitely help us,” said teacher Lynda Sullivan.

Principal Sternberg said that the new materials and curricula will be integrated with current lesson plans.

“They’ve been planning on this curricula,” the principal said of the school’s teachers, explaining that they have already been using the introductory materials related to the anticipated new programs.

Though the $300,000 grant is coming from the Florida Department of Education, the Indian River County School District is responsible for making sure the funds are used as the grant allows.

The grant dollars will be issued to the school district, which will then reimburse Imagine Schools based on the charter’s invoices for the purchased materials.

“We’re very pleased and thankful,” Principal Sternberg said of the school district’s cooperation in signing off on the state grant and facilitating the funding.

Last week, Imagine Schools parent Mark Good asked the School Board to direct staff to move quickly on signing the required paperwork.

“We need books in our kids’ hands,” Good told the board, adding that if it would take too long for the materials to be delivered, he and others would drive to the distribution center in northern Florida or Georgia to pick the items up.

“We want the materials as soon as possible,” Principal Sternberg said.

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