In 2014, the Birmingham City Schools system was awarded a $19.6 million GEAR UP grant from the U.S. Department of Education.

GEAR UP – Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs – is a grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Education to high-risk communities to develop programs to prepare low-income, minority and first-generation students for college. GEAR UP students receive tutoring, mentoring, advising from counselors, summer academic enrichment and financial literacy skills to learn how to pay for college. The program changes students’ lives by creating a college going culture in schools.

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