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Waco Education Foundation awards $153,902 in innovative grants

2024-2025 Grant Funding Cycle

 

The Waco Education Foundation and its SurPRIZE Patrol recently visited 15 Waco ISD campuses.  The group surprised 49 teachers with the exciting news their 37 grant applications were approved for funding for the 2024-2025 school year. This year, the foundation is awarding $153,902 back to the district, bringing the total amount of grants funded over the past decade and a half to more than $2.3 million.

 

District teachers and staff had the opportunity to apply for funding through the foundation’s Innovative Grants program at the beginning of December. The program annually awards approximately $100,000 in grant funding in the four focus areas of early childhood development, enhanced programming for advanced students, extended education for staff, and emphasis on student performance.

 

This year’s grant projects span a wide array of topics and areas from STEM and sign language clubs, performing and visual arts, to hands-on 3D printing, and an augmented reality sandbox in a science classroom.

 

A list of grant recipients can be found below, and photos are available at the following link:

 

2024-2025 Innovative Grants Photo Albums

 

Hayley Ballesteros

Provident Heights Elementary

“SySTEM Upgrade: Coding Kinders for Critical Thinking”

$1,420

Named in honor of: McCreary, Veselka, Bragg and Allen, P.C.

 

Hayley Ballesteros

Provident Heights Elementary

 “Little Minds BIG Expectations”

$950

Named in honor of: Fabled Bookshop and Café

 

Jessica Bancale

Crestview Elementary

“Sensory Garden”

$8,497

Named in honor of: Educators Credit Union

 

Victor Boswell, Spencer Childers & Jeremiah Cabrera

G.W. Carver Middle School

“P.A.W. (Providing A Way!)”

$7,500

Named in honor of: Allen Samuels Dodge Chrysler Jeep Ram Fiat

 

Nicole Box

Provident Heights Elementary

“Imagination Stations: Combining Fairy Tales and STEM”

$1,270

Named in honor of: First Financial Group of America

 

Leslie Cannon & Jacob Garcia

Tennyson Middle School

“Microphones and Mixers”

$1,600

Named in honor of: Sheehy, Lovelace & Mayfield, P.C.

 

Larry Carpenter

Waco High School

“Do You Marimba? (In the style of Earth, Wind, & Fire’s “September”)”

$8,500

Named in honor of: H & B Packing Co., Inc.

 

Kim Carroll

Cedar Ridge Elementary

“Hank Zipzer’s Talents”

$570

Named in honor of: Fabled Bookshop & Café

 

Amy Cheatham

Mountainview Elementary

“Good Morning, Mountainview”

$1,700

Named in honor of: First National Bank of Central Texas

 

Brittany Clark & Mary Collins

Lake Air Montessori

“American Sign Language (ASL) Club”

$2,600

Named in honor of: The Prince Family

 

Emily DeRosier & Kendra Saladiner

Kendrick Elementary

“Mission:MakerSpace”

$8,200

Named in honor of: Keurig Dr Pepper

 

Debbie Gaines & Debby DeGraff

Bell’s Hill Elementary

“Garden Walk”

$530

Named in honor of: Fabled Bookshop & Café

 

David Gerada

University High School

“Making a Melodious Mariachi”

$8,500

Named in honor of: Central National Bank

 

Kelsey Glass

J.H. Hines Elementary

“Makerspace Studio”

$2,215

Named in honor of: Community Bank & Trust

 

Jennifer Hanson

University High School

“Wireframe Explorations of Transformations, Area, and Volume Studies”

$1,852

Named in honor of: Carter BloodCare

 

Bonnie Holmstrom

Waco High School

“Paint Like the Masters”

$8,500

Named in honor of: O’Connell Robertson

 

Lisa Hughes

Tennyson Middle School

“Texans Caring for Texas”

$4,700

Named in honor of: H-E-B

 

Erin Lange

Cedar Ridge Elementary

“Lead by Example”

$600

 

Austin Lemmons

Waco High School

“Help the LSO Embrace the Case”

$8,500

Named in honor of: H-E-B

 

Rianna Lewis & Matt Rambo

GWAHCA (Greater Waco Advanced Health Care Academy)

“Gimme A Lift!”

$1,150

Named in honor of: Ascension Providence

 

Ryan McCrady

Lake Air Montessori

“3D for Everyone!”

$1,600

 

Diane McDaniel

Curriculum & Instruction Department - Libraries

“The Newest Trick in the Book”

$1,125

 

Wendy Morrow

Hillcrest PDS

“Snap Circuits and Robotics

$1,000

 

Wendy Morrow & Amanda Marshall

Hillcrest PDS

“Farming for the Future”

$1,000

 

Mandy Moss & Martin Schwinger

Waco High School

“Print on Demand”

$5,820

Named in honor of: Waco High School Class of 1958

 

Arelena Nixon

Tennyson Middle School

“Graphical Skies: Integrating Coding and Drones into STEM Education”

$7,800

Named in honor of: CORE Construction

 

Nelly Perez & Cathy Montemayor

Provident Heights Elementary

“Empowering Young Minds through STEM & 3D Printing”

$3,500

Named in honor of: Sally & Johnny Bledsoe

 

Jalicia Pyburn

South Waco Elementary

“Sensory Pathways: Enhancing Learning Through Sensory Grant”

$2,000

Named in honor of: Lochridge-Priest

 

Sherry Prather

Tennyson Middle School

“Transformative Learning through Augmented Reality: Igniting Curiosity Across Disciplines ”

$8,500

Named in honor of: TFNB Your Bank for Life

 

Kevin Rivera & Paula Hoover

Hillcrest PDS

“Power Up the Arts!”

$5,000

Named in honor of: Lowe’s of Waco

 

Heather Russell, Shana McGowan & Janice Carroll

J.H. Hines Elementary

“Assistive Technology-Scan Reader Pens”

$3,000

Named in honor of: Nemmer Electric

 

Brenda Schaefer

Bell’s Hill Elementary

“Learning in a Whole New Light”

$6,025

Named in honor of: Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers

 

Adrian Sigler

Lake Air Montessori

“Into the Natural World, Into the Universe!”

$5,000

Named in honor of: Waco Motorsports

 

Haley Slaughter

South Waco Elementary

“Reading Everywhere”

$3,300

Named in honor of: Bird Kultgen Ford

 

Elizabeth Updegrove

Hillcrest PDS / Special Education

“Speak Up!”

$9,515

Named in honor of: Cargill

 

Edward Vermeulen-Wise & Ashley-Elizabeth Vermeulen Wise

Waco High School

“Design Lab Expansion”

$5,600

Named in honor of: Rogers-O’Brien Construction Company

 

Jennifer Zane

Cedar Ridge Elementary

“Fired Up for Fractions!”

$5,535

Named in honor of: Sturdisteel