Zionsville Education Foundation announces school grants


The Zionsville Education Foundation announced its 2023 spring grants to teachers and schools in the Zionsville Community Schools district. The grants total $37,700.

ZEF members visited Zionsville classrooms and schools, surprising grant recipients March 30.

“We surprise the grant recipients with a prize patrol made up of ZEF board members, staff, and community grants committee volunteers,” ZEF Executive Director Lyle Browne said.

“It is always one of the best days of the year as we get to celebrate our teachers and all that they do for their students.”

Two types of grants were awarded —- $23,393 for classrooms and $14,330 for imagine professional development. The grants will fund learning experiences for students and provide growth and renewal opportunities for ZCS educators.

ZEF classroom grants fund opportunities for educators to learn about innovative ideas and creative projects for their students. The grant includes funding for math manipulatives for middle schoolers; new technology for high school speech classes; decodable readers for early and emergent readers; and advanced digital illustration tools for high school digital design courses, and hands-on tools for third- and fourth-graders to learn how computers work.

ZEF imagine professional development grants provide professional growth and renewal opportunities for teachers with three or more years of full-time education experience. The grant funds opportunities for educators to attend conferences where they can learn with peers from across the U.S. and have access to subject experts. The investment in professional development has a ripple effect on the quality of education in the community, as teachers bring back new ideas and best practices to their classrooms, according to the ZEF.

“These and other ZEF grants provide much-needed funding that enables teachers to dream big for students at every level, in every school, in all disciplines across our community, and we are grateful to our donors that make these grants possible,” ZEF Board President Mark Pascarella stated.

The ZEF is a nonprofit dedicated to supporting the students and staff of Zionsville Community Schools. Since its inception in 1995, ZEF has raised more than $1.7 million to fund various programs that enhance the educational experience for students in the Zionsville Community Schools.

ZEF is supported by donations from individuals, businesses, and community organizations. The foundation said that the contributions allow ZEF to continue its mission of empowering students and enriching education in ZCS.

Writing a grant takes extra time in an already busy career. We love celebrating their hard work and watching their innovative ideas come to fruition for their students,” Browne said.

The grants will be implemented during the 2022-23 school year with continued use by students for years to come.

For more, visit zionsvilleeducationfoundation.org.

Recipients of 2023 Spring Classroom grants are Emily Wleklinski and Kim Lalley of Zionsville Middle School; Julie Beck, Patty Williams, Pam Fremion, Shannon Merrell and Maria Smith of Union Elementary School; Erin Manifold and Maggie Smith of Zionsville Middle School; Mica Wilson and Elana Cutter of Zionsville Community High School; Marissa Grant of Eagle Elementary School; Zionsville Community High School’s art department; Jill McCune, Tina Boudreau, Lauren Driesen, and Katie Sarpa of Trailside Elementary School;  Molly Seward of Trailside Elementary School; Adelpha Twyman of Zionsville Community High School; and Shannon Merrell of Union Elementary School.

Recipients of 2023 Imagine Professional Development grants are Kylie Staples of Zionsville West Middle School; Jim Crismore, Megan Grady, Ashley Murray and David Schurger of Zionsville Middle School, Zionsville West and Zionsville Community High School; William Doublestein of Boone Meadow Elementary School; Ashley Boutillier, Allison Tripolitis and Danielle Wilson of Zionsville Community High School; Erin Manifold and Maggie Smith of Zionsville Middle School; and Rebecca Hampton and Emily Zucker of Pleasant View Elementary and Union Elementary Schools.