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The Annie E. Casey Foundation has awarded a $1.5-million grant to the Carter Center to support the center's Atlanta Project, a program designed to improve the quality of life for the city's low-income children and families.

The center will use the three-year grant to support community efforts to fight drug abuse, high dropout rates, teenage pregnancy, juvenile delinquency, unemployment, homelessness, and other social problems that affect Atlanta's low-income neighborhoods.

The Atlanta Project will be the center's first major domestic initiative.

The Carter Center, founded by former President Jimmy Carter in 1982, is an Atlanta-based nonprofit organization that focuses on global concerns, including conflict resolution, democracy, human rights, health, and hunger issues.

The DeWitt Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund awarded $350,000 in planning grants to seven organizations last week as part of the fund's school-family partnership initiative.

Institutions receiving grants were the ASPIRA association, a national Hispanic youth organization; Family Service America, a North American nonprofit association that seeks to strengthen family life; the National Black Child Development Institute; the National Coalition of Advocates for Students; the National Council of Jewish Women; the National PTA; and the National Urban League.

The grants were awarded to the agencies to plan new ways of developing their existing family-school partnerships and creating new "educational linkages.'' These efforts include providing parents with more information about how the American education system functions and helping schools break down language and cultural barriers with parents who are recent immigrants.

The National Endowment for the Humanities awarded a $381,000, two-year grant to the Folklore Research Center of the Bank Street College of Education in Manhattan this month. The grant will be used to help two New York City community school districts integrate the study of folk literature into their elementary and middle-school curriculum.

Forty teachers will attend summer institutes on folk literature at Bank Street in 1992 and 1993. Participants will study the narrative process of fables, proverbs, fairy tales, trickster and African dilemma tales, and learn how to use this literature to develop their students' cultural and academic literacy.

The center will also provide staff development during the school year to support teacher-initiated research in folklore.--M.S.

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