Wichita Falls, TX (PressExposure) March 18, 2009 -- As news of economic uncertainty continues, parents and educators are getting creative in supporting their schools. Many campuses are seeking grants and doing extra fundraisers not just for extra-curricular activities but for critical classroom needs as well.
TopSchoolFundraisers.com is an online source for free advice and resources for planning school fundraisers. Recently the company offered not just fundraising help, but also awarded several schools direct financial support.
In fact over 300 schools across the United States applied for the grant. In addition to a one page application, schools had to submit a written proposal or other creative presentation such as a video. The three schools that were awarded grants were:
1.Fuller GT Magnet Elementary, Raleigh, North Carolina 2.P.S. 168/M.S. 203, Bronx, New York 3.Wadesboro Elementary School, Wadesboro, North Carolina
Sandra Sims, President of Step by Step Fundraising and publisher of Top School Fundraisers, said, "I have been truly amazed at the creativity of educators all over the country. They are intent on providing innovative and fun ways for students to learn. We expected to see a lot of applications for technology, which there were, but there were requests to fund subjects like music, visual arts, dance, science, reading and vocational courses. There were quite a few schools that are located in low income areas, with serious funding issues so we had to take that into consideration.â
Public School 168 in Bronx, New York (P.S. 168/M.S. 203) serves children from Kindergarten to 12th grade who have learning disabilities or special needs. Teacher Nicole Sivilich said, âStudents with these disabilities are more likely to learn using computer technology over the standard lecture classroom teaching. We would like to see more of our students increase their social and learning skills using technology.â Many of these students also face other personal struggles as well; 95% of the students are on the free or reduced lunch program.
Unfortunately this school is severely lacking in working computers. The award from Top School Fundraisers in the amount of $2000 will help the school start obtaining computers. Principal Rosa Nieves Greene noted that the school is applying for other grants as well so that all the students have adequate access to computer technology.
At Fuller GT Magnet Elementary in Raleigh, North Carolina, the fifth grade class is planning their first school trip to Washington, D.C. They have been doing fundraisers all year in order to go on this trip. Parent volunteer Julie Henry, who also works for the local NBC station, helped students create a great video to showcase why they are are so determined to make this field trip a reality. The Top School Fundraisers grant in the amount of $2000 provided scholarships to students, so that every child in the class will be able to attend.
Wadesboro Elementary School in Wadesboro, North Carolina received $1500 to obtain science lab equipment, instructional materials and supplies for science experiments. Principal Ratliff described the problem and what they are doing to solve it: âOur students scored very poorly on the Science EOG (End of Grade Test) 2007-2008. Our teachers and students are heart-broken due to WES scoring 5% on the state science EOG. We would like to create an atmosphere of wonder about the world of science. The Science Learning Center Lab would enliven academic instruction by providing hands on experiments and observations.â
Wadesboro continues to work toward providing a quality education for students despite tough circumstances. The community is now facing high unemployment due to the closure of several textile mills. The school is also classified as a Title I School, since 88% of the students receive free or reduced lunch. Principal Ratliff says that despite all this, âOur citizens have a history of hard work and resiliencyâ and the future will be hopeful.
In addition to the three schools who received grants, Top School Fundraisers also selected five of the applicants to recognize with an honorable mention. Four of these schools utilized video as their grant application presentation.
1.STAR Prep Academy, Culver City, California 2.Loma Verde Elementary, Novato, California 3.Poinsettia Elementary, Carlsbad California 4.Tattnall Square Academy, Macon, Georgia 5.Will Rogers Learning Community, Santa Monica, California
While applications were received from schools all over the country, there were quite a few from states hit hardest by the recession. As noted by the honorable mention list, many of them were from California. It is commendable that school leaders are looking beyond their circumstances to find a way to provide a quality education for children.
More information about the schools who won can be found in the list of grant winners at the Top School Fundraisers website: http://Topschoolfundraisers.com/grant