JACKSON, CA—The office of Dr. Steve Russell, superintendent of the Amador County Office of Education (ACOE), has been notified of a grant award totaling more than $600,000 from the California Department of Education (CDE).
The Inclusive Early Education Expansion grant, written by Donna Custodio, director of Preschool/Child Care Council, ACOE, is designed to fund programs seeking to improve inclusive classroom practices. This total awarded amount of $637,080 will fund several ACOE-led projects at three district campuses: two new ADA-compliant playgrounds and a new, all-inclusive preschool classroom.
Approximately $500,000 of the award is earmarked for a new preschool classroom at Ione Elementary, which will serve both special education and general education students.
Approximately $100,000 will go toward construction of fully ADA-compliant playgrounds at Plymouth State Preschool, on the Plymouth Elementary campus, and Jackson State Preschool, on the Argonaut High School campus.
Dr. Robert Russell
In response to the grant award, Superintendent Russell said, “Finding financial resources through grant writing is a priority of the ACOE, and we are thrilled that our efforts are paying off for students. We cannot rely solely on the traditional budget process – the money is just not coming to us from the State like we would like it to. This is a really exciting, tangible development for our students.”
Preschool Director Donna Custodio added, “It is well worth the effort when we find sources of revenue like the Early Education Expansion Grant. It’s a win-win situation.”
Work on both the Ione Elementary campus new classroom construction and the two playground build-outs will begin as soon as funds are received in the coming weeks and the bidding process has been fulfilled.