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Teachers receive classroom grants from SBPS Foundation

November 9, 2018

SCOTTSBLUFF — The Scottsbluff Public Schools Foundation completed the first round of its Classroom Grant Program and awarded three classroom grants. The program allows teachers opportunities to offer new, creative learning activities for students.

“It is specifically for programs or activities that are not in current curriculum, but align with curriculum and provide an opportunity for students to learn more about a topic or learn in a different way,” said Foundation Director Alyssa Harvey.

After reviewing the applications, the foundation selected the JROTC, elementary music program and principles of marketing as grant recipients.

“We chose to award these requests because they so clearly aligned with our criteria,” Alyssa Harvey said. “Each program will specifically provide students a new skill, leadership opportunities, and hands-on training in an area where they have expressed interest.”

The JROTC and principles of marketing were awarded $500 and the ukelele program was awarded $2,100.

JROTC requested funds for a flagpole in the outdoor classroom area at Scottsbluff High School. The cadets be able to practice ceremony customs like reveille, a bugle call, trumpet call or pipes commonly used to wake military personnel at sunrise, and retreat, which occurs at sunset. The ceremony customs are a way to honor and respect the flag and country, which is a big part of the JROTC program.

“Teaching these skills will instill a sense of pride in our cadets and will provide them with a lifelong respect for our national symbol,” said Lt. Col. Jeffrey Johnson.

For the elementary music program, elementary music teachers submitted a request for classroom ukeleles and instructional materials. Scott Harvey, Lincoln Heights music teacher, initially wrote the grant for his students and then decided to ask other teachers, Trevor Teichroeb, Deanna Goranson, Joel Rick and Charnelle Long, for support.

“Once I started looking into cost and thinking about a ukelele program, it made sense to ask the other schools if they wanted to teach the instrument, too,” Scott Harvey said. “It’s a popular program because it is affordable and easier for little hands to learn than the guitar.”

The instruments will reach about 500 students across the district.

The third classroom grant went to Justin Gipe’s principles of marketing students. The students will hold a social media contest by using the district’s Instagram account to boost student engagement. From the contest, students will learn about the pros and cons of organizing and carrying out online event campaigns. The contest will be for three weeks and will include themes and hashtags each week. Students are responsible for developing the materials, with prizes offered for the best themed photos.

The second round of the Classroom Grant Program closes in February. The third round closes in May, with those funds available the following school year.

Alyssa Harvey said, “we will not guarantee a certain number of grants, or a certain amount of money, but rather are asking teachers to be creative and remember us as a possible source for the super cool things they want to do with their students.”

With the recent success from the online auction and Hawaii giveaway fundraiser, they were able to bring the program back for the first time in several years.

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