Education project under way

Education project under way

Union City – School children will be getting a gift due to a joint effort underway between Discovery Park of America and Walmart. With a grant from Walmart’s Tennessee Giving Program, Discovery Park has begun development of science and social studies curricula for field trips for grades 1-8. The curricula will be ready for children to visit and learn when Discovery Park opens in 2013.
Jim Rippy, chairman of Discovery Park announced Kim Crews has been hired as coordinator of the Rural Education Enhancement Program (REAP), as well as Aquarium Manager, and will be working with Tennessee teachers to develop curricula that meets student needs and fully complies with state curriculum standards.  
“We’re delighted to have Kim join Discovery Park and create these educational programs for schools. Kim’s recent experience as Associate and Interim Director of the UTM Reelfoot Lake Research and Teaching Center, as well as 14 years as a science teacher, make her well qualified to lead this project. Discovery Park’s mission is education and programs like REAP will allow teachers to utilize the facilities to enhance education for schools in our region.  This is the first program being developed in cooperation with the schools, but we expect many more as we work together to find ways to utilize Discovery Park’s facilities for area students,” Rippy said
“We’re especially grateful to Walmart for supporting our program to improve education. David Harris, manager of the Union City Walmart, has been very supportive in obtaining both a local and a state grant. We appreciate David’s support and we look forward to working with Walmart to do even more to enhance education in west Tennessee.”
“I’m delighted to be working with Discovery Park. It is very exciting to be a part of such an extraordinary venue and especially to find ways to utilize our facilities to support improved education for our students. Discovery Center’s nine exhibit galleries and historic centers on the grounds will offer numerous science and social studies learning opportunities. I look forward to working with area teachers and administrators to design programs that meet the priority needs of students and school systems and that best utilize Discovery Park’s exhibits and facilities,” Crews said.
Discovery Park of America, Inc. will be a $100 million educational complex with exhibits and interactive experiences in the areas of nature, science, technology, history, and art. The Robert E. and Jenny D. Kirkland Foundation is the principal funding source for Discovery Park.

WCP 2.09.12

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