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May 26, 2017
Grant to help Franklin County Schools upgrade computer equipment

MONTGOMERY— A grant announced by Gov. Kay Ivey is assisting the Franklin County School Board’s efforts to give students better access to high-speed internet and updated computer equipment.

The $105,000 grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission will support upgrading servers, switches and routers at Tharptown Elementary School, Red Bay School, Vina School and East Franklin School. School system officials said the current computers and internet wiring in the schools are out of date and in need of replacing. These upgrades will allow for Wi-Fi routers to be installed, giving students broader access to internet service.

“Internet access has become an essential part of today’s world, including in our schools where students can tap into enhanced educational resources,” Ivey said. “I am pleased to be able to help teachers and students in Franklin County obtain more tools to help them succeed in school.”

Matching funds of $45,000 will supplement the grant and pay for new fiber cable installation, replacing current copper wiring.  

The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs administers the ARC program in Alabama along with a wide range of other programs that support law enforcement, economic development, workforce development, recreation, energy conservation and water resource management.

“The partnership between Gov. Ivey’s Office, ADECA and the ARC is continuing to improve access in rural Alabama to services that are becoming more and more vital to everyday life,” ADECA Director Kenneth Boswell said. “Gov. Ivey is a staunch advocate for helping teachers and students, and her support of this grant is a testament to her passion for education. By completing this technology upgrade, students in Franklin County will have access to online resources that will prepare them for college and for the future.”

The ARC’s mission is to innovate, partner, and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia to help the region achieve socioeconomic parity with the nation. During a period of October 2015 to January 2017 ARC has funded 64 projects in Alabama totaling $11.2 million and resulted in 900 jobs and trained or educated 14,000 students or workers for new or advancement jobs. 

Ivey notified Gary Williams, Franklin County Schools superintendent, that the grant had been approved.


Contact: Russell Sellers, Mike Presley

For more information, visit:  http://www.adeca.alabama.gov/