Proclaim April 2022 as the Month of the Military Child and April 15, 2022 as “Purple Up! For Military Kids Day”

Each year Nebraska schools serve thousands of students whose parents serve in the military. Since
November, the NDE has recognized public and non-public schools as Purple Star Schools to denote the special efforts the schools have undertaken to support the unique needs of military-connected children. Board members passed a resolution proclaiming April the “Month of the Military Child.” The resolution honors the sacrifices of military service members, their families, and children, and calls on the NDE to continue providing resources for schools to better serve military-connected students. The resolution also proclaims April 15 as “Purple Up!” day and encourages all members of the community to show their support of military-connected youth and families on that day.

Month of the Military Child Resolution

Lincoln Public Schools Scholar Equity Cadre Presentation

Members of the Lincoln Public Schools Scholar Equity Cadre presented to the board on their work in the district. The Cadre is a diverse body of scholars from around the district who advise district leadership on policies and strategies which impact diversity and equity while profiling the successes among scholars of color.

Scholar Equity Cadre Presentation

ESSER Funding Impact: Zearn Math

The board was presented information on the Zearn Math program in Nebraska and how it is helping schools work with students. The purpose of this update is to share the impact of ESSER investments in schools. Zearn Math is the top-rated math learning platform used by 1 in 4 elementary students nationwide. Zearn Math supports educators with research-backed curriculum and digital lessons designed to accelerate learning, so all students both catch-up and move forward.

What is Zearn?

Zearn Math in Nebraska

2022 Nebraska Teacher of the Year Quarterly Report

2022 Nebraska Teacher of the Year Lee Perez filled the board in on his year so far. So far he has presented at more than 30 speaking engagements across the state. He filled the board in on his message of inclusion and work with English Language Learners.  He also previewed a few of his big national events on the schedule including Washington Week and a trip to Space Camp.

Teacher of the Year Report

Two-Year Opportunity Grants Awarded

The Expanded Learning Opportunity Grant Program Act was created by the Nebraska Legislature using proceeds of the Nebraska Lottery to promote academic achievement in high-need schools during out-of-school time afterschool and during summer break. The board approved grants that will serve students in more than 200 sites across the state. Eligible sites operate quality afterschool programs funded by a 21st Century Community Learning Center federal grant and have been in operation at least five years.

Opportunity Grants

21st Century Community Learning Centers Grant Program

Nebraska’s 21st CCLC grant program creates an afterschool environment focused on three overarching goals: improving overall student academic success, increasing positive behavior and social interactions, and increasing active and meaningful family and community engagement. Currently there are programs in 40 communities serving 150 school building populations. This competition includes recommendations to award Continuation grants to twelve quality programs that have successfully implemented 21st CCLC programming in eighteen sites.

21st CCLC Grants

Approve Expanded Learning Collaborative Sites

A portion of ESSER funds is required to go to afterschool programs. This grant will enable three years of summer school, and two full years of after school, expanded learning for selected schools. The NDE used school designation data, the CDC’s social vulnerability index, and COVID‐19 case counts per capita to identify schools highly impacted by the pandemic. 36 communities were identified as partners for the program.

Expanded Learning Collaborative Programs 

Early Childhood Education Program Grants

The board awarded new and expansion Early Childhood Education Program grants. The grants will be provided to public school districts to provide collaborative early childhood programs to serve at-risk three and four-year-old children. The purpose of the Early Childhood Education Grant Program is to improve equity of access to early childhood education/prekindergarten programs. Children of diverse characteristics will be served in inclusive environments and will be better prepared to enter school and be successful.

Early Childhood Education Program Grants