School District 49 was awarded its third consecutive grant from the U.S. Department of Defense Education Activity. The $1.5 million grant titled, “Mission DNA (Deploying Numeracy Achievement): The Building Blocks of Mathematical Minds,” will "meet the goal of increasing military-connected student performance by providing professional development to elementary teachers while providing D49 college and career ready resources necessary to successfully build and/or expand the district's Science, Technology, Engineering and Math programming," a D49-issued news release said. The endowment brings the total funding awarded to D49 through similar DoDEA grants to $5 million.  

“It is our goal to transform teaching and advance student learning by providing elementary teachers with the opportunity to deeply explore mathematical concepts through content institutes and job-embedded coaching and support," Dr. Kathy Pickering, D49 coordinator of professional learning, said in the release. "These institutes prioritize content, student engagement, student discourse, and applying the instructional shifts necessary to create shared visions of classroom instruction that advance student achievement.”  

According to the release, with support from the “Mission DNA” grant, 12  elementary schools will participate in a two-tier support training, which will allow D49 elementary teachers to "develop and cultivate a collective teacher efficacy for mathematics. ..."

The DoDEA awarded $22 million across 21 grants as part of its 2020 cohort. These grants will serve more than 100,000 students across 13 states.

“The support from DoDEA grants and the partnership from the leaders of the Colorado Springs military community has enriched the experience of both military-connected and non-military-connected students in District 49,” Dr. Louis Fletcher, D49 director of culture and services, said in the release. “The Mission DNA grant will ensure the district has great math teachers in it’s K-8 schools. We are grateful to accept this third consecutive grant through the DoDEA-D49 partnership, which helps D49 launch every student toward enduring success.” 

DoDEA's Education Partnership and Resources division works to ensure all military-connected K-12 students have access to quality educational opportunities through engagement in partnerships with school districts and professional organizations. The division provides school personnel and stakeholders with evidence-based resources and supports to increase understanding and awareness related to the unique challenges faced by military-connected students and families.