The Madison Education Foundation approved 21 teacher grants totaling nearly $40,000 that will benefit students at all five borough public schools.
"The Foundation is playing an increasingly vital role in providing teachers with the tools and technologies needed to keep the curriculum exciting and timely in the face of continuing budget constraints," the Foundation said in a release. "Skype author visits, expanded book collections, musical theater workshops — even an opportunity to perform Shakespeare at the Shakespeare Festival at — were some of the grants awarded in this fall cycle."
"Madison’s students are going to benefit from the surge of creativity we have seen from teachers who are intent on invigorating the learning process," said MEF President Anne Hargrave, in the release. "We have also funded a number of technology initiatives on a pilot basis which will provide us — and the district — with critical information before making costly purchases on a broader scale."
An on-going analysis of how grants add value in the classroom allows the Foundation to maximize donor dollars in a targeted and thoughtful manner
One of the grants approved was submitted by District Coordinator for Visual and Performing Arts, Stacy Snider, for a theater workshop at . The musical theater workshop was open to MHS students performing in the Wizard of Oz. Snider received a grant four years ago for a similar theater workshop that proved a great success with budding student performers.
Held on Jan. 9, the 90-minute workshop was led by veteran theater performer James Tabeek, who has appeared on Broadway in Beauty and the Beast, Taboo, Wicked and Mary Poppins. "The musical theater workshop gave students the unique opportunity to meet with a Broadway performer and learn actual choreography from a Broadway show," Snider said. "Thanks to MEF, Madison students were once again able to enjoy a unique and enriching experience in theater arts. The opportunities afforded to students through MEF’s generous grants have greatly enhanced students’ overall educational experiences."
The grants approved this fall include:
— Art Supplies: Three grants ( and , Grades K-5);
— Art Mural (TJS, Grades K-5);
— Graphic novels (TJS, Grade 4);
— Eight document cameras (, Grade 3 and TJS, Grades 2-4);
— Mobile projection equipment for Gifted & Talented (CAS, KRS, TJS);
— Franklin AnyBook Readers (TJS, Grade 1);
— iPad (TJS, Special Services)
— Skype author visit (Grade 6 Language Arts);
— Writing Workshop: Look for the Hook (Grade 7 Language Arts);
— Expanded book collections (Grade 8 Language Arts);
— Expanded book collections: Two grants (Grade 8 Language Arts and Social Studies co-curricular);
— Classroom Fidgets (Grade 7 Language Arts);
— Titanic Assembly (Grade 7 Language Arts);
— Shakesperience Shakespeare Festival (Grade 7 Language Arts)
— 10 Apple MacIntosh computers for Journalism Program;
— Musical Theatre Workshop;
— Document camera for Special Services
The Foundation’s grant cycle occurs in three waves — fall, winter and spring. A 16 person Grant Committee reviews applications, meets with teachers and presents recommendations to the MEF Board. In 2011 the Foundation awarded 45 grants totaling more than $86,000 across the district.