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December 06, 2016

Philly school district awarded federal grant to help older students earn diplomas

Education Grants
Carroll - School District of Philadelphia Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

The School District of Philadelphia on North Broad Street.

A federal grant will help fund a School District of Philadelphia program that aids older students looking to continue their education.

Superintendent Dr. William R. Hite announced Tuesday that the U.S. Department of Education's Counseling and Access for Postsecondary Success (CAPS) Initiative grant will provide $236,000 annually for five years to the district's Educational Options Program (EOP).

The EOP benefits students 17 years and older who left school before obtaining high school diplomas. Audrey Nock, who serves as an EOP site director at South Philadelphia High School, said the program has assisted students of all backgrounds, including some in their 60's.

“No matter the reason they originally dropped out of school, our students are motivated and want to continue to learn," Nock said. "We are proud to receive a grant to help these inspiring students reach their goals.”

The grant will allow the district to help students to prepare for placement tests, apply to financial aid programs and plan postsecondary education and careers.

“So often we focus on getting students to graduate, but we also need to help them think about what happens afterward, whether it be further schooling or a career,” Hite said. “This grant will allow the District to continue to assist students who have taken time away from school to plan for their future in a meaningful way.”

The funding will also provide both a full- and part-time CAPS counselor at all four of the district's EOP sites.

The district said enrollment for the school year’s second EOP session will begin Dec. 14 at 3 p.m.