Norfolk School Board Addresses Dwindling Grant Funds

NORFOLK — The Norfolk Public School District is preparing for potential grant cuts in the future.

On Monday evening, Norfolk Superintendent Jami Jo Thompson announced the AfterShock Program will only receive 80% funding through the 21st Century Learning Community Grant Funds for the 2017-2018 school year, and 60% funding for the 2018-2019 school year. Thompson says after that point, the school district will need to apply for a Continuation Grant which will cover up to 40% funding for five years.

“We’re starting to take actions now, looking for sponsors for clubs and things like that to help cover those costs, but we anticipate at some point we may need to take on the AfterShock coordinator position into the district budget as well. That’s not necessary this year, but could be in future years.”

Thompson says it is possible grant funding could come to a halt sooner than expected.

“Trump actually did recommend that the 21st Century Learning Community Grants be cut for future funding. That would not happen for this school year, but it would be for the following school year, but that would be up to Congress to determine whether that is a cut they approve or not. So, we’re unsure about that at this point.”

Thompson also informed the board they would be including the Career Academy Coordinator position into the district budget since they won’t know if they’ll receive grant funding for the position until after the school year starts.

“If we happen to get the grant, that’s a good thing, we’ll use those funds somewhere else. But we know that will be our position moving forward from this year on.”

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