Students in Poplarville’s Career Development Center classes next year will improve their basic skills through online, interactive courses.
 
The Lower Pearl River Valley Foundation approved a Small Classroom Grant of $4,950 for purchase of the ACT KeyTrain Curriculum. The curriculum will assess students’ need for assistance in reading and/or math, said Ann Bosworth, student services coordinator at the center.
 
“To succeed in the work place, students have to be able to read, write, locate information, listen and complete basic math problems,” she said. “Students should leave high school armed with the academic skills that will enable them to adapt and face the many challenges in life.”
 
Students will complete the KeyTrain courses that they need to improve their skills. Modules include reading for information, applied mathematics, locating information, applied technology, writing, listening for understanding, workplace observation, teamwork and business writing skills. In the grant application, Bosworth wrote that 50 percent of the district’s career and technical students test two grade levels below their current grade in math, 37 percent are two grades behind in reading and 43 percent are two grades behind in language.
 
“This grant will provide the Poplarville School District with a capability to implement a system to test students to determine subject areas in which they need individual extra assistance,” said Sid Whitley, chief executive officer of the Foundation. “Software modules are available for testing in almost every subject area. This system is expected to assist students to achieve higher scores on state tests. The Lower Pearl River Valley Foundation is happy to assist in this implementation.”
The KeyTrain system will be used in the five Career Development Center programs – culinary arts, marketing, health science, digital media and agriculture environmental science and technology.

Photo caption: 
Ann Bosworth, student services coordinator for the Poplarville School District’s Career Development Center, talks with Sid Whitley, CEO of the Lower Pearl River Valley Foundation, about the Foundation grant for an online learning program for the center. With them are Poplarville superintendent Carl Merritt, left, and Clyde Dease, Foundation president.