Carson schools get grant from Wells Fargo Foundation

A program to establish math clubs in three Carson City elementary schools to help students raise their test scores received a $12,093 grant Wednesday from the Wells Fargo Foundation.

At ceremonies in Reno featuring Gov. Kenny Guinn and Nevada Superintendent of Schools Mary Peterson, grants totaling $170,000 were distributed to the Clark County, Washoe County and Carson City schools as part of the foundation's Education 2000 Program.

Mendy Elliott, vice president and community and government relations director of Wells Fargo Nevada, said the Education 2000 Program was developed in consultation with the state education department to encourage programs that help students become more successful.

The foundation chose to support programs in elementary and middle schools that try to build self confidence and interest in areas of weakness, she said.

"We went to the educators and said 'Help us do the right thing' and this is the program that was created," Elliott said.

The math clubs will be set up at Fremont, Fritsch and Seeliger elementary schools and will be open to students in third through fifth grades, Elliott said. The goal is to involved up 120 students who had low scores in standardized math tests, provide them with additional tools and skills through the clubs - then test again them next year.

"Our hope is that we will see an improvement," Elliott said.

She said the Carson district had entered into an agreement with the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension Service, which will provide staffers to support the Carson educators involved with the math clubs.

"We're hoping there will also be some professional development going on," Elliott said. "The university will bring some expertise to the table."

Washoe County schools received a $55,000 foundation grant to establish math camps for girls in middle schools and a $29,000 grant supporting a Great Basin science project, she said.

Clark County's grant of $77,000 will go toward setting up a science and math camp program, she said.

The Wells Fargo Foundation has committed $250,000 to the first year of the education programs, so Wednesday's awards leave about $70,000 still available to Nevada school districts, she said.

Educations or administrators can get more information from Jim Brandt at the Nevada Department of Education, 687-9133.


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