Benton, Akin schools receive $10,000 grants

Benton, Akin schools receive $10,000 grants

FRANKLIN COUNTY, IL (KFVS) - Benton Consolidated High School District 103 and Akin Community Consolidated Elementary School District #91 each received $10,000 grants to upgrade technology.

The grants come from America's Farmers Grow Rural Education, sponsored by the Monsanto Fund. Funds from the grants will be used to upgrade technology in both school districts to increase student engagement and academic success in math and science.

Benton Consolidated High School will use the money to support the Engaging Students in Science Through Technology project to make science fun and intellectually engaging for students. Students will learn about science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). They will use the newly purchased technology to investigate, analyze and report results collected from hands-on experiments throughout the year.

Beginning in Kindergarten at Akin Grade School, the money will provide students with the opportunity to use temperature sensors to gather basic weather data to build a graph. From there, students will use iPads, sensors and laptops to compile and publish findings.

This past spring, local farmers nominated the district for a chance to apply for the grant. School administrators then designed a math and science-based project for the grant application. A panel of math and science teachers selected finalists. An advisory council, composed of farmer-leaders with an interest in agriculture and education, then selected the winning grant applications from a pool of finalists.

Grow Rural Education encourages farmers to nominate a local public school district, which can then compete for a grant of up to $25,000. Since 2011, Grow Rural Education has invested more than $7 million to support math and science education in rural school districts across the country.

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