Mississippi Power Education Foundation recently awarded nearly $49,800 in grants

The Mississippi Power Education Foundation recently awarded nearly $49,800 in grants to schools and school districts in southeast Mississippi. The grants will help fund the integration of science programs, opportunities for special education students and research and planning for the future in Forrest, Covington, Hancock, Jackson, Jones, Smith and Stone counties.

Nineteen grants were awarded during the foundation’s board meeting on January 19, including the following:

  • A $13,500 grant was presented to the Public Education Forum in Jackson to develop a comprehensive plan for ensuring a quality teacher in every Mississippi classroom. A report of the “Teacher Quality Taskforce and its Recommendations to State Policy Makers” will be produced and widely distributed prior to the 2002 legislative session.
  • David Snowden of Pascagoula School District received a $9,000 grant to develop a strategic plan to guide the district in future progress.
  • Jan Martinez of Hawkins Elementary in Hattiesburg received a $1,475 grant to develop the program “It’s in the Bag.” The program uses a series of 10 science-in-a-bag units to provide hands-on activities throughout the year to kindergarten students.
  • Lisa Walters of South Jones High School in Ellisville received a $1,969 grant to implement the program "Why Don’t Whales Have Arms and Legs?," where students will solve some of the puzzles of life using principles of geometry and a computer-based laboratory.
  • A $2,000 grant will help Stacey Bryant of South Jones Middle School in Ellisville begin the "Watts Up" program, which uses "hand-on" experiments to demonstrate the principles and concepts of electricity. Students will participate in demonstrations of the Van de Graff generator, magnetic fields, and Jacob’s Ladder and work in teams to create a series and parallel circuit, attach on/off switches, buzzers and other electric circuit applications.
  • "Life Through Different Eyes" will help teach children to respect and value others regardless of skin color, physical abilities, or the language they speak. With a $1,840 grant, Gail Chancellor will purchase books to implement the program at East Jones Elementary in Laurel that will encourage tolerance among students as well as improve their reading skills.
  • Antonnio Benton of Mary Bethune Alternative School in Hattiesburg received a $1,130 grant to purchase highly motivational science activity kits and demonstrations to provide opportunities to students to learn scientific concepts through use of direct application and real world connection. Through the “Young Scientists in Action” program, students will focus on topics such as magnetism, electrical circuits, acid-base reactions, atomic structure, uses of chemical elements, common chemical compounds, pH measurement, and energy system.
  • “EduGators Entrepreneurship Project,” the first student-operated business at Martin Bluff Elementary in Pascagoula, will be launched through a $1,662 grant. The EduGator Essentials school supply store will be set up by the third, fourth, and fifth grade special education resource class. These students will learn about the world of work as they improve their knowledge in reading, math and English. They also will use money earned at the store to fund field trips for job site investigations and to launch other businesses. After training and firsthand experience at EduGator Essentials, the resource students will familiarize students from regular classes with how the business works.
  • Daniel Blythe of Thames Elementary School received a $2,332 grant to help fund a professional recording by the Thames Mass Choir, which will be copied and sold for profit in the community. The recording will feature 300 to 400 Thames Elementary students in all grade levels.
  • A $1,200 grant presented to Lisa Eveleigh at North Bay Elementary in Bay St. Louis will help match a $2,000 minigrant given by the Mississippi Arts Commission for the Visiting Artist Residency program. Artists work with students and staff for two- and one-week residencies conducting teacher workshops in artistic techniques and helping students to complete a major art project – a 32-foot permanent mosaic on the school campus.
  • K.C. Williams of the Gulf Coast Education Initiative Consortium in Long Beach received a $3,910 grant to provide support to the 18-member school districts network personnel through Visual Basic 6.0 training. Prior training would also be provided to the GCEIC technology trainer and one NASA Educational Services staff person, who provides the technology training to the member districts.
  • Pam Tucker of Bay Catholic Elementary in Bay St. Louis received a $1,234 grant to purchase the Listening Library Center, a variable speed audio/recording machine that allows upper level elementary students to produce Book Buddies/Books on Tapes for use in the lower level classrooms. Commercial books on tape with audio quizzes will enhance the language arts program schoolwide.
  • At Stone Elementary in Wiggins, Linda Farrell will implement “Stone Elementary Techno-Trekkies” for students in grades K-5. With the help of a $1,450 grant, students will participate in an intensive keyboard program designed to direct instruction in keyboarding skills and techniques. Students will use computer programs and technology to be prepared to meet the demands of Computer Discovery and Technology courses at the middle and high school levels.