Education Foundation selects grant recipients


The Zionsville Education Foundation delivered grants totaling more than $34,000 to teachers throughout the district on Oct. 15.

The 11 grants awarded focus on an interdisciplinary approach to teaching, reading and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) in addition to music education and a community-wide opportunity to learn drug and alcohol avoidance skills.

“The projects selected by our community grants committee and approved by our Board reflect the continuing commitment of Zionsville educators to provide Zionsville students with innovative learning opportunities,” said ZEF Board President Mike MacLean.

During the grant process,a committee comprised of community members,ZEF Board members and educators reviews each grant proposal received. The committee then makes a recommendation to the ZEF Board, which awards grants based on the available funds.

Members of the 2012-2013 Grants Committee included Tammy Campbell, Mike Coussens, Missy Higgs, Mandy Keller, Teresa Meyer, Tracy Nasser, Matt Tucker and Brant Wright.

The principal representative is Kristin Landis, principal of Stonegate Elementary School.

“The Zionsville Education Foundation is equipping teachers to do their jobs under the new national Common Core standards,” said Theresa Knipstein Meyer, a community member on the Grants Committee and professor of Education at Butler University. “At a time when many school districts are struggling, opportunities such as these are vital for our current students and future leaders.”

Zionsville teacher Ryan LaPlante, STEM Coach at Stonegate, summed up the goal of his two elementary science grants.

“We are developing the pipeline that will lead our kids to be competitive in a global environment,” he said.

In addition to the classroom grants, the ZEF Board also approved two Imagine Grants for professional development last month. Twenty-seven teachers from Zionsville West Middle School will be attending the E-Revolution Conference in Evansville in 2013 to learn new strategies for effective learning in a media-rich environment.

Zionsville Middle School Choir Director Marie Palmer also will have the opportunity to attend the American Choral Directors Association 2013 National Conference in Dallas.

2012 Fall ZEF Grants

  • Elementary Robotics – Realizing Our Potential; Christine Squier, Eagle Elementary and Dan Layton, Pleasant View Elementary ($6,494.94)
  • One Book/One School: Igniting STEM through Historical Heroes – Sara Hunter and Kathy Roy, Union Elementary ($3,377.65)
  • Taking a Tiny Look: Advanced Studies in Compound Microscopy – Lori Bing and Cindy King, ZCHS ($6,000)
  • One Book/One School at Stonegate Elementary – Allison Spillman, Stonegate Elementary ($2,581.69)
  • Racing to the Future with STEM – Ryan LaPlante, Stonegate Elementary ($642.36)
  • PVE Reads! – Donna Frecker and Jodi Burns, Pleasant View Elementary ($4,500)
  • 3D Printer for use in Prototyping, Art and CAD Design – Matt Mulholland, ZCHS ($3,233)
  • Engineering the Future with First Grade – Ryan LaPlante, Stonegate Elementary ($1,434.15)
  • Electrify Your Strings – Kathleen Swayze, ZMS ($2,500)
  • Flocabulary: Hip-Hop in the Classroom – Stacey Behrens, Kristy Eisenman and Missy Stringham, ZWMS ($1,200)
  • Matt Bellace, PhD: “A Better High” – Greg Hall, ZCHS ($2,700)

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