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Posted December 27, 2012 | comments Leave a comment

Warren County schools receive more than $33,000 in grants for projects

By Kim Walter

The Warren County Educational Endowment has awarded eight grants totaling $33,250 to Warren County Public Schools.

Teachers from the county's schools apply for grants through the educational endowment and were notified a couple weeks ago if they had been selected for a grant or not. Doug Stanley, president of the educational endowment, said around 30 grant applications were received and taken into consideration.

One grant, which will go to a world history class at Skyline High School, will provide $7,500 worth of Android Tablets. Similarly, $2,600 was given to Warren County Middle School to purchase 12 iPads for the Wildcat Buddies. The group, consisting of National Junior Honor Society members, meets with students with differing abilities to cover material with which they need to be proficient.

Warren County Middle School also received $5,000, which will provide a lab set of iPads for the inclusive Language Arts class. The devices will be used to create podcast versions of lessons, tests and quizzes, allowing students with disabilities to access the general education curriculum as often as necessary in order to master the content.

In hopes of giving advanced readers more opportunity, E. Wilson Morrison Elementary School was awarded $3,000 to purchase Kindles for fourth-grade students. The students will have a chance to read and study classical stories as well as modern literature in a way that will enhance their love of reading.

A book buddies program will be funded through a $717 grant for Ressie Jeffries Elementary School. The money will go toward purchasing 16 books and an associated activity. Families associated with the school will get one bag with a book and materials, and will be asked to read the story and complete the activity at home. Children then will show and tell about the activity in class, but the project's main goal is to enhance literacy involvement in the home setting.

Hilda J. Barbour Elementary School received $5,000 to purchase materials and tools to enhance hands-on experiences in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Thanks to a $2,762 grant, Leslie Fox Keyser Elementary School's music program will be able to purchase a classroom set of guitars. The instruments will not only teach students the basic skills required to play a guitar, but also will help in improving fine motor skills and coordination.

One system-wide grant for $5,500 will help in identifying and testing gifted and high achieving students through Measures of Academic Progress assessments. The results of the testing can be used to meet the academic needs of the advanced students.

"The Warren County Public School system has had to make some difficult decisions in dealing with budget issues in recent years and needs our support more than ever," Stanley said. "With these eight grant awards we feel that we have been able to provide a spark to creative thinking and continue to encourage the expanded use of technology as a tool for advanced learning."

The educational endowment raises money throughout the year to help build funds for awards. Stanley said sometimes it takes support of local businesses, but the big fundraiser is an annual golf tournament which takes place in May.

To date, the endowment has awarded 84 grants totaling $261,688. Those interested in supporting the endowment should go to wceducationalendowment.org.

Contact staff writer Kim Walter at 540-465-5137 ext. 191, or kwalter@nvdaily.com

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