The grant will fund two years of tuition for UofL students who earn dual certification in elementary education and moderate/severe intellectual disability.

The idea behind the program, says UofL education professor Robert Pennington, is to create a pipeline of elementary school teachers who can serve students with disabilities.

“There has been a perennial shortage of teachers trained to help special needs children,” said Pennington, who will oversee the program.  “This grant should go a long way toward addressing that problem.”

Pennington said the grant will:

  • Pay two years of tuition for up to 30 education majors who earn dual certification. The first 15 students started this semester; another 15 will begin in spring 2017
  • Include hands-on training with students in high-poverty, persistently low-achieving local schools
  • Leverage and enhance programs offered through Jefferson County Public Schools and UofL’s Kentucky Autism Training Center
  • Fund two intensive summer programs designed to help teachers refine techniques for helping students with disabilities and their families
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Cindy Hess
Communications Director Cindy Hess has oversight for day-to-day operations in media relations and covers prestigious scholars, the College of Education and Human Development and Brandeis School of Law. She reports to the Media Relations Director, has a heckuva good resume, and faithfully eats kale for lunch every day. Cindy has more than 25 years of experience in media relations, investor relations, marketing and corporate communications and is the unit’s only employee entrusted to buy tickets for lottery pools.