At its May 24 Board meeting, Spring Branch Education Foundation (SBEF) approved $183,943 in grants to fund 28 innovative education-enhancing projects throughout Spring Branch Independent School District.
Each year, the Foundation calls for grant applications, up to $5,000 each, from any of its 46 school campuses. District-wide projects are eligible for larger grants. Faculty members and volunteers are encouraged to apply.
“SBEF grants provide students and staff with opportunities for innovative projects,” said Donnie Roseman, a member of the SBEF Board of Directors and chair of the Program and Assessment Committee. “Community members make the grants possible by donating to the Foundation and by supporting its fundraisers.”
“We are especially thrilled to have fully funded every request as approved by SBISD’s development team and SBEF’s grant committee,” SBEF Executive Director Cece Thompson said
The Foundation awarded six district-wide grants:
- Academy of Finance – In partnership with the Federal Reserve Bank Houston Branch, the Academy will honor seniors who participate in the program with a tour and seminar about careers in the financial field.
- Altharetta Yeargin Art Museum – The grant will fund Road Shows that take the museum to first-grade classrooms and Study Trips for second graders who travel to the museum. A third program, Tall Tales and Art, is a community summer reading and art experience led by SBISD art teachers. All are closely coordinated with grade-level curriculum.
- J. Landon Short Mini-Grants for Educators – This block grant provides individual grants to SBISD educators who seek transformational ways to enrich the learning environment. The grants provide a small amount of funding to make possible big ideas in classrooms.
- Spring Branch Academic Institute – The biology/science classroom will add two digital stereomicroscopes and an advanced compound microscope to its lab.
- SpringBoard Mentoring Program – More than 400 students on 37 SBISD campuses spend an hour each week with community mentors, thanks to this grant. The relationships help students who are on the brink of success build self-confidence, develop communication and interpersonal skills, discover their passions and find meaningful connections between school and the future.
- West Support Center – The Work-Based Learning Special Education programs, which help students with cognitive disabilities achieve daily vocational and independent living skills, will receive new technology.
Other grants were designated for campus projects:
- Academy of Choice and Cornerstone Academy – Professional Learning Communities will foster quality instruction by examining the effectiveness of all campus practices through collaboration and continual evaluation.
- Cedar Brook Elementary School – New headphones will allow students to more easily access technology and improve personalized learning.
- Edgewood Elementary Library – Bike-like reading desks (often called read-and-ride) will provide an action-based activity to enhance reading focus and a healthy lifestyle.
- Hollibrook Elementary School – To continue the school’s upward trajectory in grade-level reading and writing, students will receive two books to encourage holiday and summer reading.
- Housman Elementary School – As Housman Mustang teams explore SBISD core values, mentoring and service projects, spirit items will foster school connectedness, belonging and pride.
- Landrum Middle School – Swivl, an online platform, records classroom activities to help teachers observe and learn from each other through Professional Learning Communities.
- Memorial High School – The AP music theory classes and band will receive new computers and software to accelerate current curriculum.
- Nottingham Elementary School – As part of the District Redesign Initiative, substitute teachers will allow faculty time to discuss student goals and develop lessons and small groups based on student needs.
- Panda Path Early Learning School – A Parent Center/Flexible Learning Room will provide space for parents to volunteer, attend parenting classes and use computers. Teachers will use the space for professional development and meetings.
- Pine Shadows Elementary School – A six-person standing variety table, which uses kinesthetic seating options, will incorporate movement into learning.
- Ridgecrest Elementary School – Sound Progress will help students learn about audio engineering and the science of sound; it will also allow the school to host public events.
- Rummel Creek Elementary School – Technology and software with the Quaver Music Curriculum will include songs, games and activities for music, art and health fitness.
- Shadow Oaks Elementary School – Empowerment Time for grades 2-5 will help students use time effectively to support academic skills. They will collaborate, solve complex problem through STEM activities and celebrate successes.
- Sherwood Elementary School – Flexible seating will be available for students who need to manage executive functions like working memory, self-control, task initiation and attention.
- Spring Branch Elementary School – A math curriculum for first-grade ESL classes will increase learning as it allows collaborative planning and assessment.
- Spring Branch Middle School – New equipment will make possible an elective technology class, which includes topics as diverse as coding and robotics.
- Spring Forest Middle School – A broadcast journalism elective will include videography, photography and editing.
- Valley Oaks Elementary School – Two staff members will attend the Professional Learning Communities at Work conference in San Antonio this summer.
- Westchester Academy for International Studies – Based on student designs, common areas in hallways, courtyards and the dining hall will be transformed for group work, individual focus areas and spots for “casual collaborations.”
- Wilchester Elementary School – Taking a Love and Logic approach, WCE students and staff will build bridges of mutual respect, high expectations for one another and a positive learning environment for all.
- Woodview Elementary School – WES will increase its current action-based learning lab by creating kinesthetic classrooms for increased movement and academic success.
Community members who wish to support a specific program at a designated campus can make a tax-deductible donation to the Foundation and earmark it for that school. Call 713.251.2381 or visit the Spring Branch Education Foundation website for more information.
About Spring Branch Education Foundation:
Spring Branch Education Foundation is committed to supporting SBISD students and educators. It partners with the district and community to fund programs that enhance education and ̅students for the future. In 2016, Caruthers Institute ranked SBEF 42nd in the nation among 188 K-12 education foundations and in the top 10 of its division of foundations with $1 million to $1,999,999 in revenues. Since 1993, the Foundation has donated more than $13 million to the district. SBEF is a 501(c)3 organization; all donations are tax deductible.