by Kate Kelley
DIAMOND, Mo. – As a longtime educator, Cindy Sprague says she knows the importance of literacy as the building blocks for education. That’s why she’s excited about the Comprehensive Literacy State Development Program.
“I started Diamond 16 years ago as a third grade classroom teacher and when we began we were doing the Missouri Reading Initiative, MRI, and since then we’ve kinda gotten away from it and have gone into other curriculums, but with this I think we’ll get back on focus where we wanna go and will be best for our students,” said Sprague.
“The purpose of this grant is to train educators, and not only teachers, but pulling administrative level personnel into this training as well because there needs to be that administrative support for these schools and for these students,” explained Lisa Scroggs with the Missouri Dept. of Elementary and Secondary Education.
The federal grant was awarded to 11 states. Missouri secured $18 million and that money is being divided up to promote literacy across different geographic regions including rural communities like Diamond and Neosho.
“40% of that has to go toward elementary, 40% secondary, 15% goes toward early learning and the remaining 5% goes towards administrative costs here at the Missouri Dept. of Education,” said Scroggs.
Both Sprague and Scroggs say literacy training goes a long way towards a student’s success throughout their learning journey.
“We have been lucky and fortunate enough to receive the grant in all three buildings so this will allow us to have a literacy plan, create a literacy program through K-12 all the way through for us,” said Sprague.
Neosho has earned the grant for secondary services.
The goal for both Neosho and Diamond Schools is to prevent students from falling behind in subjects due to a lack of literacy skills.
In November 2020, the district had applied for a competitive grant called the Comprehensive Literacy State Development Grant. Today, DESE (the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education) released the districts and buildings that were selected. I am excited to announce that all three of our buildings have been selected for this grant and work.
Services offered to us:
Here are the links to DESE that were released today.
Newton County Health Department
812 W. Harmony/PO Box 447
Neosho, MO 64850
Telephone: 417-451-3743Fax: 417-451-1852
December 3, 2020
Citizens of Newton County,
CDC has issued guidelines that allow a reduced quarantine time for those individuals who are
identified as contacts to a positive case of COVID-19. A 14-day quarantine is recommended but
there are circumstances in which the quarantine time can be shortened. The Newton County
Health Department will implement the following circumstances that will shorten the quarantine
1. Quarantine can end after day 10 without testing if no symptoms have been reported
during daily monitoring.
2. When diagnostic testing resources are sufficient and available, then quarantine can
end after day 7 if a diagnostic specimen tests negative and no symptoms were reported
during daily monitoring. The specimen may be collected and tested withing 48 hours
before the time of planned quarantine discontinuation (day 5 or 6). This will allow for
test results to be received by day 7. If test results are received before day 7, the contact
cannot be released from quarantine before day 7.
*Be aware that testing sites may only be testing individuals exhibiting symptoms and
therefore, tests may not be available. Check with site for availability.
In both cases, continued symptom monitoring and masking/distancing through day 14 must be
These guidelines will apply to all individuals who are contacts to a positive case. However, the
Newton County Health Department reserves the right to evaluate each individual case and
make changes on a case by case basis if circumstances justify changes to protect the health and
well being of the individual and those in the community.
It is suggested that household contacts isolate themselves from the positive household case or
be aware that quarantine time will extend for a longer period of time due to continued contact
with the positive case.
A link to the full CDC guideline text is below.
AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY AFFIRMATIVE ACTION EMPLOYER