For 20 years strong, the Frisco Education Foundation (FEF) has existed solely to benefit the students and staff of Frisco Independent School District.
Each year, the FEF provides financial resources to maximize student potential in the District through educational programs, student scholarships and grants for innovative educators. The the 2018-19 school year was no exception.
“The FEF has completed another successful year in giving back to our teachers and students, said Geneva Polster, president of the Frisco Education Foundation Board. “Our board of trustees work hard throughout the year to maintain our success and, of course, we couldn't do it without our generous donors and supporters who help make it all happen.”
Whether there is a large District initiative or a small classroom need, the Frisco Education Foundation and the team of board members are always ready to serve.
The 2018-19 school year also brought about new initiatives FEF including the Frisco ISD Business Incubator which is fueled by INCubatoredu curriculum. INCubatoredu allows students to start with an idea that they develop and iterate into their own product or service startup. The Foundation provided the seed money at the Inaugural FISD Business Incubator Pitch Night at Collin College. Two teams were awarded $1,500 each and will continue their business development in the 2019-20 school year. Click here to learn more.
Since June of 2008, the FEF has hosted a week-long summer camp for FISD middle school students called Mindbender Academy that encourages participants to explore the world of science, technology, engineering, art and math (STEAM). Over 500 students attended this year’s event, which included two weeks of learning through hands-on activities.
The FEF also continues to host the Gary Burns Annual 5K & Fun Run that benefits student scholarship opportunities including the Gary Burns Memorial Scholarship, Grants for Great Ideas and the overall mission of the Foundation. This event brings together students and community members from across the District in support of the annual FEF fundraiser.
The annual Frisco Education Foundation Scholarship Night is a memorable evening in celebration of Frisco ISD’s past, present and future. Many of the scholarships are awarded in memoriam of community historical figures to current star students working toward their future collegiate hopes and dreams.
In 2014, Roger Lawler and his wife Jody made the largest donation to the Frisco Education Foundation with a $1 million endowment. Through this generous donation, the Roger Lawler Endowed Scholarships were made possible. This year, the FEF awarded two Roger Lawler Endowed Honor Scholarships, each to a total of $23,475 which provided two students a four-year scholarship.
This year, the Foundation awarded $689,896 in scholarships to over 700 students. Since 1999, FEF has awarded more than $7.2 million in college scholarships to more than 6,300 graduating seniors.
Grants for Great Ideas
At the beginning of the school year, staff members were provided the opportunity to apply for grants that will help benefit classroom and campus initiatives. Completed applications were reviewed by the FEF Board who ensure grants funded are in alignment with District curriculum and initiatives while impacting student learning in a new, innovative way.
As a result, 44 grants were awarded to 44 teachers and 29 co-applicants across 27 campuses.
Innovative grants across the District allowed numerous experiences for students across the District including the use of augmented reality at Clark Middle School where students brought the Alamo and its historical figures to life right inside the classroom. Active Learning Classrooms were provided equipment that allowed students with a push of a button to engage with their peers in a variety of games while learning the concept of cause and effect.
Thanks to the FEF, Vandeventer Middle School students purchased lab dissection materials that allowed enrichment opportunities.
“From our bullfrogs, sheep eyeballs and dogfish sharks, the students are still raving about the priceless opportunities of being able to dissect and explore the world around them through this hands-on experience,” said Vandeventer teacher Elizabeth Heinrich.
Three additional District-wide grants were also selected as winners for a grand total of $75,551.75 awarded via Grants for Great Ideas in 2018-19.
Staff members who contributed to the Frisco Education Foundation also had 25% of their contributions routed back to their campus for general purpose grants. Across 68 campuses, the FEF awarded $29,569.
This year, the FEF awarded an astounding $105,120.75 across the District in grants. Learn more here.
“We love our partnership with the District and look forward to celebrating FEF's 20th year,” Polster said. “Look for big things to come…”
The District is thankful for the Frisco Education Foundation, which provides staff and students with the opportunity to succeed.
The Frisco Education Foundation is a 501(c)(3) that runs on the generosity of the community. Community members interested in donating money or their time in the interest of supporting Frisco ISD through the Frisco Education Foundation are encouraged to contact Allison Miller, the FEF director.