Southborough Education Foundation awards $42K in grants for new school programs

by susan on July 25, 2012

Post image for Southborough Education Foundation awards $42K in grants for new school programs

Above: Recipients of the 2012-2013 school year SEF grants (contributed photo)

The Southborough Education Foundation has a mission to help fund innovative programs in the Southborough schools, creative and challenging programs that wouldn’t get funded through the normal budget process. SEF recently awarded $42K in grants for the upcoming school year. The grants will go to fund things like pedometers, equipment for DNA manipulation experiments, marimbas, and a whole lot of iPads.

Over half of the total grant amount will be used to purchase more than 40 iPads and 12 Nook e-readers, along with associated apps and software. The devices will be used throughout the district for innovative programs in reading, math, music, and more.

Here’s more from SEF on how the grants will be used to enhance education in the Southborough schools.

The grants awarded are diverse and cover many fields of study including music, math, physical education, language arts and science. Through funding by SEF, English Language Learners at Finn, Woodward and Neary will benefit from audiobooks specially recorded with timely pauses and good expression to help students increase their word retention and comprehension. Students at Woodward will be able to take advantage of a twice weekly before school exercise program that will incorporate technology and motivational techniques to help students embrace new physical activities. The writing program at Woodward will also be enriched by the addition of iPADs and the Book Creator App. Using the iPAD and the Book Creator App, students can write with a versatile word processor, create illustrations and use digital photography to create a dynamic narrative that can be shared electronically.

A grant awarded to the Neary School for the purchase of an interactive software program called Go Solve Word Problems will help revise the 4th grade math program and improve the students’ problem solving skills. Two additional grants awarded to Neary allow for the purchase of eight iPADs. First, an iPAD with GarageBand will be used in the music department to record lessons and concerts, motivating the students to practice more and improve their performances. The remaining seven iPADs will be used across the curriculum in both 4th and 5th grade classrooms specifically enhancing the math and literacy subject areas.

Trottier Middle School will be receiving a total of 30 iPADs to be used by the ASSISTments math program. SEF was able to fund this grant for Trottier with the help of generous contributions by two local real estate developers. Robert Moss and David Ferris donated $5,000 each toward the $16,000 total amount funded. The ASSISTments program, which is a web-based assessment program through Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), allows teachers to use data to drive their decisions regarding instruction in the math classroom. Two additional grants awarded to Trottier will allow for the purchase of Nook e-books for the library and marimbas and xylophones to be used by the music department.

Algonquin Regional High School was the recipient of three SEF grants for the upcoming school year. The science department will receive a FotoDyne Transilluminator Digital Camera and reagents for DNA manipulation experiments for use in the Biotechnology Course. Additionally, iPADs and pedometers will be purchased for a Senior Survival Course that prepares students for independent post-high school living. Finally, a wireless microphone was awarded to the high school for use in a team-taught, cross-disciplinary public speaking course.

Grants are supported through SEF membership fees, private donations, corporate grants, the annual SEF Spelling Bee, and several individual fundraising events. Since its inception, SEF has distributed over $300,000 worth of grants to the Southborough school system.

For more information regarding SEF, please go to www.southboroughed.org or contact SEF at info@southboroughed.org.

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