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LHSEF awards $20,000 in Charter Year Foundation Grants

Thanks to outstanding support from the local community and the tremendous success of its first major fundraising event, the Lemont High School Educational Foundation is awarding grants to Lemont High School teachers in just its first year of existence. The Foundation has committed to supporting five grants totaling $20,000 in the second half of the 2007-08 school year. Originally, the Foundation planned on its inaugural year to be one in which it introduced itself to the community and built awareness of its mission and goals. However, donations from individuals and businesses in the Lemont community coupled with the success of the sold-out “Food for Thought” fundraiser have put the Foundation in position to begin providing assistance to Lemont High School’s faculty and staff immediately. The Foundation will fund five Charter Year Educational Foundation Grants, with a stipulation that the funds provided for the projects must be used by the end of the 2007-08 school year. Included among the Charter Year Grants are the following proposals:

• Amazon Kindle eReader

• Breakfast Buddies

• “Slam Poetry” with Artist-in-Residence George Miller

• Wacom Intuos3 Tablets and Corel Painter Essentials 3

• We See College in YOUR Future

A complete description of these grants, with recipient information and the amount awarded, may be found on the subsequent page.

The Foundation will begin awarding its annual Educational Foundation Grants, beginning with those for the 2008-09 school year, later this spring.

The Lemont High School Educational Foundation provides revenue and support to Lemont High School in order to enhance educational opportunities and enrich the overall experience for its students. The foundation operates independently from the school, yet fosters the district’s ongoing and systemic efforts to attain the next level of success in all areas of a comprehensive high school education for all students.

The foundation’s mission is to partner with the community to make lasting improvements to Lemont High School that will enhance the total educational experience for all of its students. Its desire is to fund and support programs and opportunities that aid students’ growth, both academically and as citizens of the Lemont community.

The foundation is a not-for-profit 501 (c) (3) charitable organization. All gifts to the foundation are tax-deductible to the extent provided by the law.

Charter Year Educational Foundation Grants

“Amazon Kindle eReader”

Funded at $550 — proposal by Sean Clark

Students live in a world where instant messaging, texting and Web boards are essential tools to communicate. The future of their scholastic reading consumption lies in the cyber world as well. This grant will provide an opportunity for a teacher to pilot an eReader, which could potentially deliver (in whole or in part) reading materials to students that are now contained in textbooks, novels, periodicals and other sources. The future could see students’ backpacks, lockers and bedrooms less clogged, as they could be issued an eReader at registration that is pre-loaded with every textbook or novel they would need and could be instantly updated with new material as necessary.

“Breakfast Buddies”

Funded at $600 — proposal by Joan Hamburger

Giving a chance for special needs students and their mentors to regularly come together, Breakfast Buddies is a successful program that benefits two unique groups of students. Held before school on PLC Wednesdays, Breakfast Buddies has grown into a program that attracts 20-25 students weekly. Students with disabilities gain confidence and acceptance, helping to make them feel more a part of the Lemont High School community. Their peer mentors fulfill community service hours and gain expertise in working with individuals with handicaps of all kinds, from autism to deafness, and are given college recommendations based on their work. The number of participants in this program has doubled since its inception just 18 months ago.

“Slam Poetry with Artist-in-Residence George Miller”

Funded at $3,000 — proposal by Sharon Jacobs

Providing a unique opportunity for students to gain confidence in their skills as writers and speakers, Artist-in-Residence George Miller will hold workshops with a wide variety of students, focusing specifically on the poetry genre and incorporating skills from the Illinois Standards of Writing. Workshops will be held during Creative Writing classes, before school on PLC Wednesday and after school, affording all students the chance to learn to better communicate with others through both the written and spoken word. All students will have the opportunity to witness Miller perform his work during a culminating all-school assembly, where he will also address the writing process and writing for a specific audience. That assembly will also include a school-wide Poetry Slam that features poetry from Miller and Lemont High School students and staff performed in a contest setting, similar to that of Chicago’s Green Mill, the birthplace of the Poetry Slam.

“Wacom Intuos3 Tablets and Corel Painter Essentials 3”

Funded at $7,200 — proposal by Jerry Vanderschoot

Keeping the Lemont High School Art Department on the cutting edge of technology in the field, students will gain real-life experience working with a “tool of the trade” that is standard in the burgeoning areas of art, design and graphic arts. Incorporated on a regular basis into Painting courses, the Intuos3 Tablets and the accompanying computer program Corel Painter Essentials 3 will enable students to design and create classroom projects and work with state-of-the-art hardware and software to expand their abilities in computer arts technology.

“We See College in YOUR Future”

Funded at $8,650 — proposal by Dr. Thomas Trengove

Looking to aid students who are on the cusp of achieving a composite ACT score that will qualify them for a four-year college or university, this program will help subsidize the cost of the ExcelEdge ACT 36 prep course for targeted students. The grant will pay for half of the cost of an eight-week ACT prep course, which is designed to help students become familiar with the ACT test and provide them with test taking strategies that will help them achieve a higher score on the ACT. Working from the notion that “nothing succeeds like success,” students who scored between 15-17 on the practice ACT will receive an invitation to take the course at half the cost, with the goal of increasing their score on the ACT in April to at least 18, which not only will make them eligible for entry to a four-year college or university, but also help the school work towards its goal of having 85 percent of all its seniors reach that goal by June 2010.