2017 Grant Awards
REF is pleased to award a total of $45,035 in grants and professional development this year, supporting innovation and creativity in Reading schools!
District-Wide Professional Development Fund
Year-Long Professional Development Fund: REF is excited to pilot a new professional development fund for RPS educators to support training throughout the year. By offering a rolling deadline, educators can apply for the cost of tuition as courses and programs arise. This special fund will make it easier for teachers to bring innovative and creative ideas back their classrooms all year long. Established by the REF Board.
Mindfulness Speaker Dr. Christopher Willard: In a forum open to the community, the author of Growing Up Mindful will discuss how mindfulness in children can improve attention, lower stress and anxiety, and regulate emotions. Grant co-sponsored with the Joshua Eaton WASH Committee and Reading PTOs. Grant proposed by Christine Lotterhand and Mary Giuliana.
Internet/Social Media Safety Education Speaker: Dynamic expert Katie LeClerc Greer will deliver engaging and informative presentations to students at both Parker and Coolidge middle schools and RMHS, as well as present an evening program for the community at large. In addition, student team activities reinforcing the presentations will follow in the schools. Grant proposed by Richele Shankland.
High School Grant
Enhanced Health and Wellness Learning: By providing much needed laptops, expanded curriculum content will be accessible and will provide innovative and creative ways to engage all students. Jointly funded with RMHS PTO. Grant proposed by Katherine Fiorello, Jacqueline Callahan and Paula Graham.
Middle School Grants
Stargirl and Auggie, The Middle School Collection: Coolidge middle school will do a 6th & 7th all-grade read together with associated activities will address social issues like: inclusion, bullying, and individualism. Grant proposed by Mary Anne Cuscuna and Christine Steinhauser.
Professional Development with Dr. Mahesh Sharma: Week-long workshop highlighting strategies for teaching math-challenged students with this highly admired expert. Grant proposed by Rebecca Lord.
Student-Centered Foyer: By providing an LCD screen, sound system and complimentary software, Coolidge middle school will actively celebrate students and their work and achievements, stream live events, and contribute to student social and emotional well-being. Grant proposed by Sarah Marchant, Marcia Grant and Sarah Doane.
Elementary School Grants
New Kiln for Expanded Ceramics Program: With the additional of a kiln, Birch Meadow elementary school’s ceramic curriculum can now support greater complexity, quality, and quantity of work pieces. Grant proposed by Christina Erb and Julia Hendrix.
Sensory Integration within the Classroom: Woodend and Birch Meadow elementary schools will distribute specialized wobble chairs, ball chairs and standing desks to improve the attentiveness of highly active students throughout the schools, thus improving the learning environment for all. Grants proposed by Karen Rando, Aynsley Harrington, Jacquelyn Pelusi and Lynda Michel.
Expanding Core Value Literature Collection: Each elementary school will receive additional funding to expand the social/emotional/mental health library collection started last year. Grant proposed by Kim Adamo and Lisa Norcross.
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