As part of their efforts to help close the achievement gap, Target and the Greater Twin Cities United Way on Tuesday awarded 10 metro-area schools grants totaling $1 million.

The grants, $100,000 per school, are part of of the groups' "Spotlight Schools" initiative, which was announced last summer. Forty schools were invited to apply for the grants and the 10 winners were announced on Tuesday.

“Spotlight Schools’ teachers will now have the technology – from Smartboards to iPads – that are necessary to help students be on an even academic field," said United Way President and CEO Sarah Caruso  It’s a win-win: enriched classroom experiences in which students can excel and thrive equal a stronger educational foundation"

The grant winners are: Community of Peace Academy, Como Park Elementary, Eastern Heights Elementary, Friendship Academy of the Arts, Harvest Prep Academy, Heritage Science and Technology Magnet, Hiawatha Leadership Academy, Patrick Henry High School, Saint Paul City School, Washington Technology Magnet.

"At Target, supporting communities through giving has always been a cornerstone of our business and the Spotlight Schools grant is one example of how Target will achieve our goal of giving $1 billion to education by the end of 2015," said Laysha Ward, Target's executive vice president and chief corporate responsibility officer. "The 10 schools being recognized by receiving the Spotlight Schools grants are amazing schools serving in-need students in our community, so we’re excited to see how the grants will help accelerate academic achievement for more students with greater urgency."

Staff at Eastern Heights Elementary