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Marble Falls Middle School was awarded a $169,787 Effective Schools Framework Focus Support Grant earlier in the month. Executive Director of Secondary Education Heather Metzgar explained the award during a Monday, Sept. 20, school board meeting. 

The grant is given by the Texas Education Agency to provide instructional improvements on school campuses. Marble Falls Independent School District was one of 236 districts that applied and one of 81 districts that received the award.

“I think part of the reason the middle school is so competitive in the process to get the grant is because, even during the time that they were in the pandemic, they were able to show a significant increase in their STAAR scores,” Superintendent Chris Allen said during the meeting. “We’re real proud of the work they’ve done out there and trust that leadership team to do what needs to be done with the work that E3 alliance has given them to continue to maximize growth in our students.” 

Grant funding will be used over the next two years. Through the grant, the middle school will partner with E3 Alliance, an Austin-based organization, to provide “whole school support on building campus-wide systems to improve outcomes for all students with a focus on emergent bilingual students,” Metzgar said. 

Campus staff and district leadership will work toward building an “instructional playbook” with implementable strategies through the partnership, Metzgar said. Of the grant, $45,000 is budgeted toward the partnership during the 2021-22 school year. 

Because the partnership exceeds $24,999, the school board must vote to approve it. The board will vote on the item during an October meeting.