by Bruce Wm. Brown
At its April meeting the Stockbridge Area Educational Foundation reviewed grant applications totaling $6,555. The funding of grants and college scholarships is a primary way the Foundation fulfills its purpose: “To promote the education of area residents and to enhance their educational opportunities.”
At the meeting a request was reviewed from the Stockbridge Schools Curriculum Director, Michelle Hilla, for summer training of school staff on Recognizing and Supporting Students Experiencing Trauma. The application cited the National Survey on Children’s Exposure to Violence which found that over 60% of school children have experienced some form of trauma or abuse. Such experiences limit the ability to form relationships with teachers, cause failure to manage emotions, and increase the likelihood of suspensions. The summer training will provide school staff with the skills to identify and support such students in need.
Science teacher, Laura Bell, submitted a grant request for Digital Microscope Imagers to augment the high school’s compound light microscopes. The devices attach to student computers to capture digital images of the microscope view field. Students can then study, photograph, annotate, and save detailed images of specimens to their computer.
The Stockbridge Community News requested support for Hope Salyer, their director of community relations, to attend the National Federation of Press Women’s 2019 Communications Conference. The experience is intended to advance the ability of newspapers to provide positive educational information to readers and cultivate a stronger more positive sense of community. The SCN print version goes to 8,900 area households and their web site reaches 22,000 viewers each month.
Stockbridge junior high school teacher, Alexis Dyer, submitted a grant request to purchase student planners. The transition to junior high school is challenging for students during this unique time of life. The planners are to be issued to every 7thgrader to help them track and manage their assignments and school responsibilities. Teachers routinely monitor student planners, which are also used to communicate with parents about their students’ daily school experience.
The Foundation also voted $25 per participant to support the Stockbridge FIRST Robotics team. The team qualified to compete at the FIRST Robotics World Championship held in Detroit on April 23rd.
If approved, grant requests may be wholly or partially funded by the Foundation. Grant expenses may also be coordinated and shared with the school district. The Foundation prefers to fund unique start up projects rather than those that are routine school district expenses or projects that reoccur year after year.