Central HS competing for $10 million grant

The Shenandoah Valley-Herald

WOODSTOCK — A Shenandoah County high school has been named a semifinalist in a national competition to overhaul American public education.

Central High School in Woodstock will compete in the third phase of XQ: The Super Schools Project this spring. They are among 10,000 schools across the country who applied for the program and 350 chosen for the third round, or “Development Phase.”

The XQ project is a grant contest that challenges students, teachers and administrators to develop and share ideas of what a 21st-century education should look like. Five winning schools will be announced in August.

Each winner will receive a $2 million grant each of the next five years to enact their proposals.

The project is run by the XQ Institute, which is an offshoot of Emerson Collective, a nonprofit founded by Lauren Powell Jobs, widow of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.

Participating schools filed applications detailing their ideas and preliminary designs in February. Semifinalists have until May 23 to submit their final proposals on how to implement their ideas in classrooms.

According to XQ’s website, schools must address 13 “knowledge module” topics in their proposals, including “Student Agency and Engagement,” “Time, Space and Technology,” and “Performance Management and Evaluation.”

The XQ selection continues a banner year for CHS. In October, the U.S. Department of Education named the school one of 335 Blue Ribbon Schools, which have the highest marks in reading and math assessments and the highest graduation rates in the country.

CHS was one of three schools in Virginia to receive the Blue Ribbon award.

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