Two Polk County Schools elementary schools have been awarded Community Action Grants by Meta’s Forest City Data Center.

Polk Central Elementary received a grant of $11,679 while Tryon Elementary received $15,000 from the Data Center, which awards grants annually to projects that use technology for community benefit, to connect people online or improve STEM education.

Kimberly Granville, Academically and Intellectually Gifted teacher at Polk Central, led the grant initiative and described each grant as follows:

Tryon Elementary: This project is for enhancing the existing technology lab as a central location for STEAM in grades K-5. The lab’s purpose is to bring hands-on experience for critical thinking and innovation to all students while engaging students to find their interest areas and passions for career opportunities and lifelong learning and community support.

Teachers will have available Blueprints for Biographies STEM Series (Title 1 Curriculum from the Jodi Mahoney Center for Gifted Education at the University of Arkansas) and EiE (Engineering in Elementary) STEM boxes which will go along with the biographies and grade level science lessons.

Polk Central Elementary: STEAM education for Polk Central will focus on hands-on learning with real-world applications to help develop a variety of skill sets, including 21st Century skills. Students will learn problem solving and resilience building through lessons to foster ingenuity and creativity while encouraging experimentation, teamwork, knowledge application, adaption and tech use.