- Associated Press - Thursday, September 24, 2015

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - A Catholic elementary school in Philadelphia primarily serving immigrant students has received a $1.4 million grant for improvements and expansion.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports (https://bit.ly/1QA54n4 ) the grant was awarded to St. Thomas Aquinas by the Philadelphia School Partnership. It’s the nonprofit’s largest gift to a Catholic school to date.

Partnership Great Schools Fund director Jessica Pena says St. Thomas’ staff is “aligned and focused on students, outcomes and hard work.”

The funding will be used to pay for a reading specialist and other staff members in addition to repairs and technology.

Half of the school’s 300 students speak English as a second language. Officials say the average yearly household income of school families is just over $30,000.

Principal Vince Mazzio says the grant will “have an unbelievable impact.”

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Information from: The Philadelphia Inquirer, https://www.inquirer.com

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