The Highland Park Educational Foundation has announced more than $15,000 in grants to the Highland Park Public Schools, representing the Foundation’s continued support of teacher-led programs within the district.
The Foundation’s bi-annual grants come at a time of significant budgetary constraints for the district, resulting in teachers often paying out-of-pocket for in-class resources.
“For more than 20 years, the Foundation has supported creative, innovative, teacher-led initiatives that makes each class unique,” said Cathy Denning, Foundation Chair. “We live in a small district with finite resources and those budgetary constraints limit the district’s ability to provide valuable enhancements to students’ education. What the Foundation does is to help our teachers add valuable experiences to the curriculum. We support teachers’ unlimited creativity.”
The Foundation received eight grant requests for the fall 2018 cycle and its Board unanimously approved all submissions, totaling $15,182.
“The Highland Park School District would not be able to add such high value to its programs had it not been for the Foundation’s unflinching and consistently dependable support over the years,” said Dr. Scott Taylor, Highland Park Public Schools superintendent. “This year’s slate of grant-funded projects continues the great tradition I fortunately inherited since my start in the school system.”
This cycle, teachers at Irving Primary School received two grants, one for “Pencil Pouches” for all first graders and another “Perseverance Playtime Playground” that encourages students to engage in and persevere at complex tasks. Bartle Elementary won grants for the Book Club and LEGO sets for the Robotics Club. In addition, the Foundation continued its major support for the Camp Bernie Outdoor Education Program which is a three-day, overnight program to the hills of north New Jersey for all fifth-graders. Camp Bernie has been a signature HPEF program for the last 15 years.
Three grants were awarded to the Highland Park Middle School, including a field trip to “Medieval Times” that ties in with the study of the middle ages, and another for sixth graders to Adventure Aquarium in Camden that supports learning about aquatic animal life as well as threats to the world’s ocean environments. “Students in Action Leadership Program” which involves community-based activities involving more than 60 middle school students also received the support it requested.
The next deadline for teachers to submit grant proposals is February 2019. “The Foundation looks forward to receiving more exciting, innovative ideas from our district’s teachers,” Denning said.
For more information on the Foundation and past grants, go to www.hpefnj.org.
About the Highland Park Educational Foundation
Founded in 1996 by members of the Highland Park Community, the Highland Park Educational Foundation is a non-profit, 501(c)3 organization that supports innovative programs and projects developed by Highland Park Public Schools staff. Through its fundraising efforts and community involvement, the Foundation is able to support activities that enhance student learning and achievement and that promote the social and emotional development of our children in the Highland Park Public Schools. The Foundation believes that vibrant and creative schools are essential to building strong communities.