Education

Officials have announced what’s next in Jefferson County Public Schools’ partnership with Ford’s Next Generation Learning program, and it includes more investment to improve students’ real world experience.

Louisville is one of several cities working with the Ford Fund, which is helping shape the conversation about what public schools look like. Earlier this summer a number of teachers participated in “externships” to learn how to incorporate real world experience into the classroom.

Officials announced Wednesday an additional $350,000 investment in the Louisville program, will now include sponsorship of two new academies at Jeffersontown High School, which is one of the district’s career-themed schoosl that already offers engineering, welding and arts programs.

Ford wants a bigger presence inside the classroom, said Ford’s Next Generation Learning Executive Director Cheryl Carrier.

“We will be sponsoring those schools,” she said. “With that sponsorship there will be opportunities for competitive scholarships. There will be opportunities for competitions that we will help fund.”

The announcement also means the teacher externship program will continue and Carrier said it will hopefully lead to more teachers participating. Right now a couple dozen were part of the summer pilot, but she said those teachers could become instructors for future groups that wish to go through the program.

Ford hopes that the academy programs become a nation-wide project that can extend beyond just Louisville, said Carrier.