Gov. Jay Nixon today announced nearly $1.3 million in grants to establish Innovation High Schools at several public schools in the St. Louis area. In partnership with St. Louis Community College (STLCC) and local businesses, Innovation High Schools will allow participating students to earn college credit and gain hands-on experience in high-demand fields such as advanced manufacturing, skilled trades, health sciences, and information technology.
"My administration has focused on helping prepare students for the jobs of tomorrow, as well as giving them the skills businesses need today." Gov. Nixon said. "Through dual-credit programs and internships with local businesses, Innovation High Schools will allow eligible high schools students to get on a fast track to earning an affordable degree in a high-demand field. That means they can acquire more skills - and, as a result, have better job prospects - in less time, at a lower cost. Strategic investments like these will help Missourians find jobs today and strengthen our economy in the future - because education is the best economic development tool there is."
The Community Development Block Grants funds, administered by the Department of Economic Development (DED), have been awarded to three St. Louis-area projects which are part of the Pathways to Prosperity pilot. Pathways to Prosperity, initiated by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, is focused on helping schools create pathways that combine rigorous academics with strong technical education and lead to success after high school. Missouri is one of six states chosen by Harvard University and Jobs for the Future to participate in the pilot.
St. Louis Public Schools - $499,196
The St. Louis Public Schools’ main goal through Innovation High School is to assist low-income high school students gain the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in high-demand jobs in the fields of health science and information technology.
Pattonville School District - $500,000
The Pattonville School District and the Economic Council of St. Louis County will create and support three career pathways in Advanced Manufacturing, Health/Medical professions and Information Technology in collaboration with STLCC and local businesses. STLCC will offer both onsite and satellite campus Associate Degree level courses, creating an opportunity for students to earn both high school and college credit. Students will also be provided work-study and internship opportunities with cooperating area businesses, creating real-world learning experiences.
Ferguson-Florissant - $289,800
The Innovation Campus Middle Apprenticeship Program is a collaborative effort, under the leadership of the St Louis Small Business Empowerment Center, that will bring together the Ferguson-Florissant School District and the Special School District's North Technical High School in St. Louis County with the Cabinet Maker and Millwright Joint Apprenticeship Programs of the Carpenters Joint Apprenticeship Training Program and SLCC. The program will enable participating students from these high schools to participate in a registered apprenticeship program, and earn national certifications and college credits that will equip them to meet employer needs in the growing and targeted Advanced Manufacturing sector.