Strengthening Schools Grants Strengthen Our Communities

Published on Friday, February 1, 2019 in Community

Strengthening Schools Grant presented to Paw Paw teacher

In January, we surprised 37 educators with Strengthening Schools Grants to help them bring new and exciting learning opportunities to students throughout our service territory. We are proud to offer these grants, funded with partnership dollars from Touchstone Energy Cooperative, each year to those who share our vision of creating vibrant, relevant and sustainable rural communities.

Cari Houston, a teacher at Paw Paw High School, requested funds to purchase a Mobi interactive tablet. “The Mobi gives me the flexibility and mobility to walk around the room while giving instruction. I now can provide help to struggling students instantly. The Mobi gives me access to any lesson materials that are on my desktop computer and it's also a great way to increase student participation, differentiate my instruction, and get instant feedback through formative assessments.”

Co-op members Janene Ogrin, Pauline Giacobone and Lois Anderson evaluated and scored all applications and determined final awards without knowledge of the school, district or community.

Awards were presented to the following schools and projects:

  • Bangor Middle School, $250 for the novel Wonder for students
  • Bangor Middle School, $366 for Chromebooks
  • Behavior Education Center–Van Buren Intermediate School District (VBISD), $1,300 for flexible seating and desks
  • Bloomingdale High School, $250 for a video camera
  • Central Elementary School (White Pigeon), $1,000 for PE equipment
  • Central Elementary School (White Pigeon), $500 for a membership
  • Centreville Elementary School, $720 for science kits and curriculum
  • Coloma High School, $1,300 for a digital / audio system
  • Coloma Junior High School, $420 Spanish short novels
  • Colon Elementary School, $200 for books and book bags
  • Davis Elementary School (Decatur), $1,000 for a one-year subscription to the Accelerated Reader Program through Renaissance Learning
  • Davis Elementary School (Decatur), $1,500 for books for the elementary library
  • Davis Elementary School (Decatur), $420 for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) supplies
  • Decatur Junior/Senior High School, $280 for novels
  • Dowagiac Union High School, $500 Spanish books and magazines
  • Lawton Elementary School, $1,500 for Second-Step Bullying Prevention
  • Lawrence Jr./Sr. High School, $1,000 for robotics club
  • Lincoln Elementary School (South Haven), $400 for outdoor learning spaces
  • Marcellus Elementary School, $1,600 for Chromebooks
  • Marcellus Middle/High School, $1,000 for virtual reality equipment
  • Mattawan Early Elementary School, $270 for parent videos to help parents encourage literacy in their children
  • Mattawan Later Elementary School, $290 for trail cameras
  • Mattawan Later Elementary School, $70 for digital scales for their science classes
  • Mattawan Middle School, $500 beekeeping club
  • Mendon Jr./Sr. High School, $600 for books
  • Morenci Middle School, $500 for a greenhouse
  • Niles Senior High School, $1,000 for robotics
  • Paw Paw High School, $1,000 for Suttons Bay field trip to study Great Lakes ecology aboard the Inland Seas Education sailing vessel
  • Paw Paw High School, $315 for a Mobi interactive tablet
  • Ross Beatty Junior/Senior High School (Cassopolis), $1,000 for robotics club
  • Ross Beatty Junior/Senior High School (Cassopolis), $1,500 for band instrument repair tools
  • Ross Beatty Junior/Senior High School (Cassopolis), $1,650 for microscopes
  • Sam Adams Elementary School (Cassopolis), $500 for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM)lab
  • Stubnitz Environmental Education Center (Lenawee Intermediate School District), $500 for environmental education post-lesson plans
  • Vicksburg Community Schools, $1,000 for robotics club
  • Volinia Outcomes School (Marcellus), $1,300 for maintenance, safety and general supplies
  • Watervliet High School, $2,500 for joiner machine for shop class