Ohio grants fund gas, oil education

By Marc Kovac | Dix Capital Bureau Published:

COLUMBUS — On Dec. 16, the Ohio Controlling Board signed off on more than $88 million in grants to help schools cut their costs and better teach children.

The total included more than $15 million for efforts to prepare students for jobs in eastern Ohio’s emerging shale oilfields.

The lawmaker panel left intact all 24 grant suggestions offered by state education officials in the first round of a program backed by Gov. John Kasich and included in the state’s $62 billion biennial budget earlier this year.

A total of $250 million - $100 million in the current fiscal year and $150 million in the next one - was earmarked for grants for new technology or other projects aimed at improving student achievement, reducing costs and directing more state funding into classrooms.

A new governing board reviewed applications and offered its recommendations for funding during a meeting earlier this month.

Among the recipients OK’d by the Controlling Board Monday was the Northern Local School District, in partnership with 27 rural districts in eastern Ohio, which will receive nearly $15 million for efforts to prepare students for jobs in the oil and gas industry.

Additionally, the Carrollton Exempted Village School District in Carroll County, considered a focal point of for horizontal hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, activities, will receive $4 million to “significantly partner with energy industry businesses to create an Energy Resources Dynamics program that establishes new pathways for students to jobs and postsecondary opportunities in the energy field,” according to documents.

 

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