rcs cental office

Rutherford County Schools

The Tennessee Department of Education announced over $2 million in Perkins Reserve Grant awards to 38 school districts for the 2021-22 school year to support career and technical education (CTE) across the state.

This year’s Perkins Reserve Grant recipients submitted applications for programs, initiatives, and strategies that help to ensure their students succeed in exploring, choosing, and following a career pathway to success, whether by providing equitable access, aligned career pathways, high-quality learning experiences, or a combination thereof.

Rutherford County Schools received $50,000, which will be used for the student industry certification initiative and a new program of study for audio / visual production CTE.

“Thanks to the Perkins Reserve Grants, Rutherford County Schools’ students will benefit from additional opportunities and support around career and technical education through industry certifications and CTE equipment, which is so essential to helping prepare them for future postsecondary and career success,” said Tyra Pilgrim, CTE Director for Rutherford County.

“We appreciate the commitment of the Tennessee Department of Education to this critical work and keeping our state focused on education, skill, and workforce development.”

The Perkins Reserve Grant is a competitive grant opportunity made possible through the federal Perkins V legislation passed in 2018. In 2020, the PRG grant opportunity was redesigned under the four-year Strengthening Career and Technical Education in Tennessee state plan to foster local innovation and support implementation of CTE programs and career pathways, especially in more rural areas, aligned with regionally identified high skill, high wage, and/or in-demand occupations or industries.

At the K-12 level for the 2021-22 school year, 38 Tennessee school districts, 13 of which are in economically at-risk or distressed counties, will receive a total of $2.3 million in Perkins Reserve Grant awards.

“Tennessee is continuing to focus on career and technical education to boost student readiness and postsecondary success, and the Perkins Reserve Grant awards help support this work especially in our rural districts,” said Commissioner Penny Schwinn. “These grant awards will ensure districts, schools and partners can continue coming together to help expand CTE opportunities for all students.”

Applications were reviewed by a team of TDOE staff from the Division of College, Career and Technical Education and partners from the Tennessee Board of Regents.

All applications needed to address at least one of the priority areas of the state plan — ensuring equitable access, aligning career pathways, and/or ensuring high-quality learning experiences, and the Regional Career Pathways application must also include a regionally focused secondary and postsecondary or workforce partnership.

More information on the Perkins Reserve Grant may be found here.


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