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PA Department of Education Visits Centre Hall Elementary School, Highlights Shapiro Administration’s Proposed Funding Increases in STEM and Career and Technical Education


Centre Hall, PA - Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) Executive Deputy Secretary Angela Fitterer today visited Centre Hall Elementary School in Penns Valley Area School District, where she selected a book from the school’s Golden Ticket to Literacy book vending machine and read to students of all grade levels.

“Reading and STEM education create pathways to future success for students, even more so when the two go hand-in-hand,” said PDE Executive Deputy Secretary Angela Fitterer. “By engaging young learners in reading through interactive and fun activities like book vending machines, we are giving them a ‘golden ticket’ to future success and achievement.”

Fitterer read Aliana Reaches for the Moon by Laura Roettiger, a “STEAM book for aspiring scientists.” The book follows Aliana, who hopes to become a scientist, and creates a birthday present for her brother Gustavo inspired by the light of the full moon shining into her room.

Governor Josh Shapiro’s inaugural budget proposal builds on his commitment to creating prosperous pathways for learners across the Commonwealth. This budget proposes a $17 million increase for Career and Technical Education (CTE), including a $5 million increase for computer science and STEM, which will enable schools to receive grants to establish or expand CTE programs.

Centre Hall Elementary School received the Golden Ticket to Literacy book vending machine from non-profit organization Random Acts of Reading in February. The Golden Ticket to Literacy program provides a curated list of books that students can access with gold tokens earned for good behavior. Some books hold special tickets for events and activities, and one book contains a golden ticket. When the golden ticket is found, all grade levels receive a copy of the book, and its author will have a virtual meeting with students. 

“Penns Valley Area School District is committed to empowering our students every day to reach individual success,” said Superintendent Brian Griffith. “Our work is both challenging and rewarding. Attracting and retaining outstanding employees is essential to achieving high standards of student learning. We look forward to backing school funding that is integral to lifting the achievement of ALL students, specifically those at times forgotten in rural school districts.”

The Governor’s proposed 2023-24 budget also includes a $567 million increase in basic education funding, $100 million for school-based mental health services, $100 million for school environmental improvements, and a $60 million increase to improve postsecondary access and completion. This budget is the first step toward a comprehensive solution to improve our public schools, push education dollars out equitably, support our teachers, and invest in targeted solutions that meet students’ needs at every level.

For more information on the Pennsylvania Department of Education, please visit the website or follow PDE on InstagramFacebookTwitterYouTube, or Pinterest


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