Millions coming to Georgia to curb pandemic learning gap

Published: Aug. 23, 2022 at 6:36 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Georgia Governor Brian Kemp announced more than $37 million in funding for programs to close the pandemic learning gap.

Last year, we saw the first wave of funding at just over $47 million. The money goes to YMCAs, Boys and Girls Clubs, and school districts across the state.

What impact will it make locally?

“We can meet kids where they are and really make a difference in their performance at school. So, it’s awesome, to be a part of an organization that is focused on that,” said CEO of the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Augusta Kim Evans.

She expressed her gratitude for not just getting this funding once but twice.

“I’m excited that we’re giving this funding for a second year. It’s definitely going to allow us to continue to push,” she said.

The club received $500,000 of funding the first time to go towards preventing students from learning loss they might’ve experienced coming out of the pandemic.

With the second round coming, the club expects the same amount, which will allow them to continue to bring in certified teachers, tutors, materials, and others to enhance learning.

Evans says the investment is working.

There are more than 1,000 students enrolled in the after-school program that these funds will look to go towards.

“Over 78 percent of our kids and our after-school programs either maintained or improved their grade and reading, which is huge. Not having that level of support for nearly two years was pretty remarkable to see this kind of impact,” said Evans.