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The SIA grant provides $1.6 million to reduce class sizes, fund social-emotional learning curriculum, more

At its meeting Monday, Oct. 5, the Lake Oswego School Board approved the Student Investment Account grant application that will fund learning improvements throughout the district.

The grant application originally was approved in February, but since the state has changed the amount of the grant from $5.2 million to 1.6 million, Assistant Superintendent Jenn Schiele presented the revised grant publicly once again.

Due to the economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the state reduced every district's SIA grant amount.

"The grant itself does not change, as our needs remain the same," Schiele said.

She said that through the SIA, the district expects to receive approximately $1.68 million for this year to invest in educational improvements.

Last fall the district gathered input from the LOSD community on what the money should go toward and received about 3,000 responses.

The community had an interest in adjusting and reinforceing mental health support for students, increasing training for teachers and reducing class size.

"So, keeping our community's wishes at the center of our discussions, we've created a revised budget and plan for the SIA grant and compared that to the state's allowable expenses," Schiele said.

The grant will fund an additional 17 full-time employees.

Schiele said the new budget includes funding the new social-emotional learning curriculum, funding behavioral educational assistants at each elementary school, additional classroom and specialist teachers to create reduced class sizes, one mentor for new teachers, and professional development for staff.

"Although we're disappointed that our original plan has not come to fruition this year, we're thankful for the additional $1.6 million, and this money will make a difference for our students," Schiele said.

She said the grant is posted on the district website for the community to view.

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