RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ The Virginia Department of Education is awarding more than $1.6 million in grants to enhance teachers’ knowledge of science and math and their ability to teach the subjects. The department said in a release that nine partnerships between school divisions and colleges and universities won the awards as part of the Math and Science partnership grant competition. Officials say the money will provide professional development for nearly 650 teachers throughout Virginia. The partnerships will provide professional development to teachers in an effort to reduce achievement gaps in math and science among student groups as well as raising achievement of all students. The partnerships are tied to state math and science Standards of Learning tests.