A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Duke Energy awards four major grants in NKY: Boone County, Cov schools, NKY Education Council, NKU

Duke Energy boosts local giving; awards $217,500 to 16 inventive educational initiatives in Greater Cincinnati, including four grants in Northern Kentucky.

Most of the funding for the 16 local grantees is aimed at reversing academic declines due to recent in-person learning gaps among K-12 students across Greater Cincinnati. This includes the common “summer slide” and emerging “COVID slide.”

“Across the board, we’re continuing to invest in organizations and programs that are driving positive change in communities across this region,” said Amy Spiller, president of Duke Energy Ohio/Kentucky. “These education grants are vital now more than ever, as many students may have fallen behind academically, emotionally or both due to the pandemic and remote learning.”

Over the past five years, Duke Energy, through its Duke Energy Foundation arm, has awarded 80 K-12 education grants, totaling more than $1.8 million, to game-changing groups and programs in Ohio and Kentucky.

K-12 education grant recipients in Kentucky

The grants in Northern Kentucky include:
• Boone County Schools was awarded $10,000 to support its student energy and STEM teams across the district, which serves more than 20,000 K-12 students. These teams study how energy is used in school buildings and help implement programs to reduce energy consumption, among other activities. The extracurricular opportunities aim to increase awareness among students of the potential education and career opportunities in various STEM fields.
• This summer, more than 800 students from Covington Independent Public Schools attended Camp Covington, which received a $10,000 grant from Duke Energy. The annual camp, a partnership between the school district, Covington Partners and other local groups, provides academic support, enrichment programs and fitness activities at no cost to students or their families. This summer’s program was specially designed to address the learning loss many students experienced as a result of virtual learning. It also served students’ mental health needs as a result of the ongoing pandemic.
• Northern Kentucky Education Council was granted $15,000 to train volunteers for its One-to-One reading and math program for students in first through third grades. One-to-One is a post-pandemic strategy to reverse the “COVID slide” for children who are struggling with learning loss and gaps in achievement. Coaches tutor children weekly to help put them on a desired trajectory in their reading and math skills while improving attitudes, self-efficacy and motivation. The coaches also engage parents in their children’s literacy learning by teaching effective reading strategies that kids need to be successful readers.
• Northern Kentucky University received a $30,000 grant for its Center for Integrative Natural Science & Mathematics (CINSAM). Established in 2000, CINSAM offers professional development for teachers of fourth through eighth grade students across Northern Kentucky. While the training typically aims to enhance the teaching, learning and application of STEM topics, the curriculum for the 2021-22 school year addresses the specific needs of students who may be behind academically due to the constraints of recent remote and socially distanced learning.
In Ohio, the grants included Adventure Drew, $10,000; B The Keeper, $10,000; Butler County Educational Service Center, $7,500; Cincinnati & Hamilton County Public Library, $10,000; Cincinnati Art Museum, $10,000; Cincinnati Center City Development Corp.’s (3CDC) Ziegler Park Summer Camp, $20,000; Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, $25,000; Down Syndrome Association of Greater Cincinnati, $10,000; iSpace’s Making More Mathletes program, $10,000; Miami University, $10,000; UpSpring, $10,000; and Warren County Educational Service Center, $20,000.

Duke Energy Ohio/Kentucky, a subsidiary of Duke Energy, provides electric service to about 870,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in a 3,000-square-mile service area, and natural gas service to approximately 542,000 customers.

Duke Energy’s electric utilities serve 7.9 million customers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky, and collectively own 51,000 megawatts of energy capacity. Its natural gas unit serves 1.6 million customers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Ohio and Kentucky. The company employs 27,500 people.

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