United States Department of Education awarded Catalyst-Maria at 6727 S. California a $400,000.00 grant that will assist the Educational Team plan, design, and implement ongoing learning in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM). The grant will fund development of science and computer labs as well as math programs and classroom libraries.
The USDOE conducted a national competition among Charter Schools for a grant to facilitate “Planning, Program Design, and Initial Implementation. According to the USDOE,” the purpose of the grant is to increase national understanding of the charter school model and to expand the number of high-quality charter schools available to students across the Nation by providing financial assistance for the planning, program design, and initial implementation of plans, as well as dissemination of information on charter schools.
Seventy-one high-quality charter schools entered the competition and the top ranked 16 applications were recommended for funding. Catalyst-Maria was one of the 16 recommended and then chosen to receive these funds.
The Catalyst Schools and Catalyst-Maria have demonstrated rigor in the academic program design and implementation. This grant will be given over the next two academic years and be a great asset as Catalyst-Maria grows toward full capacity.
The current 800 scholars in grades K – 12 will grow to a record number 1100 by the time the full grant has been received. The Catalyst-Maria building once housed 1500 young women. Because of the inability of families to pay tuition at a private school, the school closed and was sold to Catalyst. The families of Chicago Lawn and surrounding neighborhoods, where Catalyst-Maria is located, continue to have a choice about their children’s education.
The Catalyst community is grateful for the award and will see that it benefits the children and families of the local community who have chosen Catalyst-Maria as their school.