Poteau Public Schools takes flight with an education grant from the Aeronautics Commission

OKLAHOMA CITY – Fifty organizations were awarded Aerospace and Aviation Education Program grants totaling over $365,000 at the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission’s (OAC) August meeting. Grants are for targeted learning programs that have a direct application to aerospace and aviation for primary through post-secondary education. The grant funds are part of the agency’s initiative to give more Oklahoma young people access to STEM careers in the aerospace and aviation industry.

The commission approved a $6,550 education grant for Poteau Public Schools for an aviation program for 6th – 9th graders using the AOPA curriculum. The first year will begin with 9th graders and will include targeting the 6th grade class with airplane awareness and parts.  

The Aerospace and Aviation Education Grant Program has been awarding aviation education grants for over 30 years. Charged with the mission by state statute, the Commission fosters and encourages students to consider aerospace or aviation as a career. The Commission’s grant program has years of positive results. The initiative supports the Oklahoma Works project that aims to address the skills gap and connect students to programs that will help build the workforce of Oklahoma’s second-largest industry.

“Congratulations to Poteau Public Schools for applying for and receiving the grant from Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission,” said Sen. Mark Allen, R-Spiro. “This grant was made possible because of the growth of aviation in Oklahoma and OAC recognizing the need to start educating our youth for careers in aeronautics.”

The OAC’s nationally recognized program enjoys a positive reputation as one of the most robust aviation education programs among state aviation agencies. For the 2021-22 school year, Oklahoma will rank #3 in the country in the number of schools teaching the AOPA curriculum. Since FY2001, the Commission has awarded $4.15 million in aerospace and aviation education grants.

“By offering aviation education, Poteau Public Schools is making a real difference in the lives of its students.  We know these educators are providing students with valuable insight into the potential for a future aviation and aerospace career, and we wish them great success with their program,” said Paula Kedy, MA. Ed., Aerospace and Aviation Education Coordinator for the Commission.

Watch the full meeting at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lfvqUmcWmrY&t=15s.