Department of Education awards Joplin Schools more than $800,000 for tornado recovery

WASHINGTON - The United States Department of Education has awarded the Joplin School District more than $800,000 in grant money for continued tornado recovery.

The Extended Services Project School Emergency Response to Violence (SERV) grant, which totals $818,185, will provide support to personnel who will undertake a comprehensive school-centered, multi-tiered intervention and response initiative, according to a statement from the DOE.

Efforts include training educators and other personnel to provide behavioral interventions that support positive academic and behavioral changes of students.

"The citizens of Joplin are doing heroic work to rebuild their schools and their community," U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan said in the statement. "The Department of Education is honored to provide continued support through Project SERV to help the learning process continue, and offer resources to students and educators who may still be dealing with the trauma of last year's devastating tornado."

The May 22, 2011 tornado killed 161 people, destroyed three Joplin schools and severely damaged six others.

President Barack Obama delivered the Joplin High School commencement address at Missouri Southern State University on May 21, the night before the one-year anniversary of the twister.

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