The Defense Department has announced the initial beneficiaries of a $20 million educational grant intended to elevate the quality of public schools near military installations, the American Forces Press Service reported Tuesday.
Karen Parrish writes Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel made the announced in a speech at a Military Child Education Coalition event, with the next round of selections to be declared in the coming weeks.
“These grants to school systems from California to Texas to Maryland will bolster science, technology, engineering and mathematics programs, as well as foreign language studies,” Hagel told participants of the coalition’s 15th National Training Seminar for education professionals.
The secretary noted that 186 educational partnership grants worth a total of $220 million have been awarded since 2009.
There are some 1.8 million children that belong to the military community, according to the report.
Hagel, who also touched on the furloughs brought about by sequestration, told his audience that today’s fiscal realities will be dealt with head-on.
“And so today I leave you with one request—that you continue to do what you’re doing… Our military children look to all of us,” Hagel said.
“They look to us for guidance and reassurance every day, and supporting them is the most important thing we’ll ever do,” he added.