Cooperstown Central School is again getting the opportunity to receive a $10,000 grant to support its Supporting Successful Strategies to Achieve Improved Results project.
Three years ago, according to the district’s special education chairperson Laura Bliss-Lamb, the school was recommended to apply for the grant because of recognized achievements in what was being done in literacy instruction for students with disabilities as well as its response for intervention model for identifying students with disabilities and providing academic support.
Bliss-Lamb said grants are awarded to schools that have been identified as having best practices in one of three areas — special education, literacy or behaviors. She said CCS was identified for best practices in both special education and literacy instruction.
“The idea is, once the state finds schools that are doing things well, they want to help other schools to replicate that. So first we were validated as having effective practices and then the second step was that they matched us up with a mentee school and we became a mentor school,” Bliss-Lamb said.
Bliss-Lamb said once the school was validated it became eligible to apply for the grant funds, which has been done for the past three years.
“What we are supposed to do with that money is to continue to improve our practices,” she said. “We can use the money to support training and professional development for teachers, for materials and supplies and to continue to move forward and support your mentee,” she said.
According to Bliss-Lamb, Norwich was identified as CCS’ mentee school in the middle of last year. She said Norwich teachers come to CCS to visit teachers and observe classes.
“It has really worked out nice because we do a lot of things electronically through email, and teleconferences, so when they are actually coming here there is pretty much no impact. They have been observing teachers in their room providing intervention, but then coming back to talk to me or having teachers come here in their free period to get more details,” she said.