School Foundation awards Florence One grants for 2015-2016 school year

BY NICOLE CARTRETTE MORNING NEWS This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Published May 19, 2015

FLORENCE, S.C. – Eight schools and Poynor Adult Education Center walked away from The School Foundation grant reception Monday night at the Drs. Bruce & Lee Foundation Library with more than $129,000 in grant money.

The School Foundation funded seven grants for the 2015-2016 school year that impact schools in Florence School District 1.  The foundation’s grants committee considered 16 requests that totaled more than $341,700.

“We were very excited by the number of applications received and the tremendous time, effort and research the teachers spent to compile these grant applications” said Trisha Caulder, chairwoman of The School Foundation Grants Committee.

“I am thrilled that we have now awarded over $1 million in grants to FSD1 teachers. This is a tremendous milestone for public education in Florence,” said Debbie Hyler, executive director for the foundation. “The majority of the equipment and technology funded by our major grants over the last 10 years is still being used in classrooms. We are so grateful to have strong financial support from the Florence community.”

A big winner in the major grants division was STEMED (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics in Elementary School), which will benefit students at Briggs, Carver and Greenwood Elementary schools.  Under the proposal by principals Susan Collins, Tara Newton and Chris Rogers, the three schools “will lead the way” in piloting the Project Lead the Way Launch curricula in Florence 1.  The schools will be among some 6,500 schools across the country to participate in Project Lead the Way programs.

The nonprofit is the nation’s leading provider of K-12 STEM programs and cites university studies that suggest students who participate in their programs are three to four times more likely to study engineering, among other factors.  The Florence 1 program is meant to give students experience working in teams to investigate issues, conduct research and answer complex questions, preparing them to use precise science terminology and critical thinking.

A second major grant funded in the amount of $41,665 was the Transition-to-High School through Writing, which will benefit West Florence High School students and will provide 30 laptops for the Freshman Success Academy.  Co-project directors are Lance Butler, Ron Harter and Maureen Shuler. The proposal calls for increasing accessibility to technology, building relationships with higher education institutions, exposing students to positive role models for writing and collaborating with middle school English teachers.

Five requests for mini-grants (up to $500) were funded for the upcoming school year.

Genevieve Boston’s LEGO Write project at $416 at Delmae Elementary paves the way for students to create story scenes with LEGO bricks then use Story Visualizer to write a story using the images they created.

Susan Lane’s Ride and Read project at $500 gets students at John W. Moore Middle School moving by providing three stationery bikes in the media center for students to use while reading.

Shellia Daniels Anderson’s PAWSitive (Providing Awesome and Wonderful Skills) at $500 is an incentive-based program that aims to improve reading and writing among students in learning disabilities support classes. Students earn a free book after passing certain placement tests.

Adult learners at Poynor Adult Education center benefit from a $500 grant for Helping Our People Excel.  "This is for the students that want more," said Til Morisey, director of Poynor Adult Education center.  Ann Stone came up with the idea of a Lunch and Learn program that the funds will help support.  "We like to connect with our students and form relationships and we thought this would be kind of a cool way to do that."  In recent years Poynor received a large grant from The School Foundation that provided iPads and a smart board among other technology still in use.  “We love The School Foundation," said Morisey.  

Kirsten Washington’s Language Learning –Easy and Engaging at $422 will benefit students at Williams Middle School.

The School Foundation remains the largest K-12 public education endowment in the State of South Carolina.  For more information about the foundation contact Hyler at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or at (843) 662-9996.

For additional information on Project Lead the Way Launch, visit

The School Foundation
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843-662-9996 tel | 843-662-9866 fax

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