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McMurry University, AISD receive grant from Sid Richardson Foundation for Fifth Grade Math-Science Program

By Gary Ellison Associate Director University Relations



ABILENE, Texas – The Fifth Grade Math-Science Magnet program, jointly sponsored by McMurry University and the Abilene Independent School District, has received a $200,000 grant from the Sid Richardson Foundation to expand the program’s effectiveness. “This affirmation from the Sid Richardson Foundation will allow us to provide even more support to strengthen science and math instruction in our region,” said McMurry University President Dr. John Russell. “Developing students with strong science and math skills and interests is of utmost importance in today’s increasingly technological world.”{{more}} “Abilene ISD is so fortunate to have McMurry University as a partner in educating our students. Abilene’s children and teachers are the benefactors of McMurry’s innovation in the areas of math and science instruction,” said Cathy Ashby, Associate Superintendent of Abilene Independent School District. A group consisting of AISD teachers and administrators, McMurry University staff and Region 14 Education Service Center staff developed the three-year expansion plan. Major objectives include expanding the McMurry summer science camps to accommodate all former classes of the Magnet School; preparing McMurry education students with strong science and math skills as counselors and teacher aids in the summer camps; developing a “train the teacher” model for middle school science and math teachers; creating weekend workshops during the school year for middle school teacher development in science and math; engaging McMurry faculty in the summer camps and professional development opportunities for middle school science and math teachers; and providing science materials and data management planning for the program. “We recognize the great value in improving the teaching and learning of math and science in our elementary schools and see this as a model for pursuing that mission,” said Valleau Wilkie, Jr., Executive Vice President of the Sid Richardson Foundation, in a letter confirming the grant.

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