A grant program is encouraging Frisco ISD educators to think outside the box.
The annual Grants for Great Ideas! program asks applicants to describe a project and how it would benefit student achievement. The Frisco Education Foundation selects winning applications and provides funds to make the ideas a reality. The program has awarded more than $265,000 since its inception.
“Teachers and administrators support us through different fundraisers and events throughout the year,” said Foundation Director Allison Miller. “This is our way of saying thank you. We’re proud to provide grants to enhance learning for students across the District.”
This week, the Foundation awarded 40 grants to educators totaling approximately $65,000. More than 125 applications were submitted.
“It really gives you a sense of purpose when you can hear from the teachers and see the faces of the kids who will be impacted by it,” said Foundation President Elect Peter Burns. “For me, it’s really exciting and rewarding and makes me even more committed to what I’m doing to continue giving teachers and students that opportunity.”
Winners were surprised at their schools with a giant check on Monday, November 5 and Tuesday, November 6.
Resource teachers Terri Taylor and Teri Guyette hugged and high-fived when they learned they were among several winners at Tadlock Elementary. Separate grants will provide additional sensory equipment for the school and hands-on activities to help students build skills in math, reading and writing.
“In the resource room, we service kindergarten through fifth grade so we have to have supplies and materials to reach kids at all those levels,” Taylor said. “Doing the work, seeing it and touching it plays such a huge role in them actually learning it and remembering it.”
Grants were awarded across the District in all subjects and grade levels. Fourth grade teacher Melinda Rauch accepted a grant with colleagues that will fund a new math problem solving game.
“Problem solving can be tedious for the kids so we’re just trying to find a new way for them to practice it that’s fun,” Rauch said. “The game adapts to their skill level and progresses as they do.”
Counselor Sarah Perry won a grant to buy short video clips from popular movies like “Shrek,” “Liar Liar” and “Jerry McGuire.” Teachers will play a different clip for students each Friday in effort to prevent bullying.
“It’s something that kids can relate to,” Perry said. “They may have seen some of these movies but they’re viewing them in another light.”
The clips will address values like courage, respect and honesty. A small amount of money Perry hopes will go a long way.
“I’m really excited,” she said. “I think it’s going to make a huge difference.”
- The committee reviewing grant applications never knows the name of the applicant or which campus it will benefit.
- See the full list of this year’s Grants for Great Ideas! winners.