LHSEF to support a record 13 grants during 2012-13 school year

The Lemont High School Educational Foundation has committed to supporting 13 grants for nearly $32,000 for the 2012-13 school year. Grant proposals were submitted by Lemont High School faculty and staff, with the goal of enhancing educational opportunities for the school’s enrollment of more than 1,500 students. The 13 grants is the largest number the LHSEF has committed to supporting in one year. 

The Foundation is funding 13 Educational Foundation Grants in part or in full - for a total of $31,810 - with a stipulation that the funds provided for the projects must be used during the 2012-13 school year.

Included among the 2012-13 Educational Foundation Grants are the following proposals:

  • An Evening Out
  • Author Visit: Neal Shusterman
  • “Beat the Spread” Breakfast
  • Breakfast Buddies
  • Continued Advanced Placement Stream Research
  • Discipline Free Dance
  • Lincoln List 2013
  • Navigating Through the Technology Classroom - Part 3
  • Podcasting & Science: Taking Learning Beyond the Classroom
  • Pre-Prom Assembly
  • Self-Defense
  • Transfer Orientation Day
  • We See College in YOUR Future - Year 5

2012-13 Educational Foundation Grant Summaries

Lemont High School teachers submitted 15 proposals for 2012-13 Educational Foundation Grants, requesting more than $50,000.

In its five years of existence, the LHSEF has supported more than $160,000 in grants to benefit Lemont High School.

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.

2012-13 Educational Foundation Grants

“An Evening Out”
Funded at $1,625 — proposal by Joan Browning, Kelly Collins-Bunn & Margie Pilarski

Socialization becomes more independent for students as they grow older, but social independence is more difficult for students with disabilities to attain. Attending after school events, or recreational events in the community, requires assistance, supervision and transportation. This grant will help students with intellectual, developmental and/or emotional disabilities become familiar with school events and learn appropriate social behaviors in a public setting. Students who participate in extra-curricular events have a more positive outlook on their education, and this program will help students learn the skills necessary for independence.

“Author Visit: Neal Shusterman”
Funded at $2,800 — proposal by Cathy Mayer & Sharon Jacobs

The first of a trilogy, Neal Shusterman’s Unwind will serve as Lemont High School’s “One Book, One School” selection for 2012. To promote the second book in the series, Shusterman has offered schools the opportunity to qualify for a free author visit if they preorder 200 copies of that second book - Unwholly - from a local bookstore. This grant will cover the purchase of 200 copies of Unwholly through Anderson’s Bookstore (Downers Grove); both Unwind and Unwholly will be integrated into the curricula for English I Honors, Modern Fiction and Elements of Reading, and the new book also will be available in the Learning Resource Center and the Writing Center. All students will have the chance to take part in Shusterman’s visit to campus.

“‘Beat the Spread’ Breakfast”
Funded at $456 — proposal by Dr. Tom Trengove

An award unique to Lemont High School, “Beat the Spread” recognizes students who achieved a better than anticipated score on the ACT portion of the PSAE, compared to their results on the PLAN test, which they took as sophomores. Any student, regardless of ability, can aspire to achieve this award since it compares a student’s performance on the ACT to his or her own past performance. This grant will fund a breakfast in April 2013 for Class of 2013 students who “beat the spread” with their performance during the PSAE the previous spring.

“Breakfast Buddies”
Funded at $1,725 — proposal by Joan Browning & Krissy Bergles

Giving a chance for special needs students and their mentors to regularly come together, Breakfast Buddies is held before school on Wednesdays and attracts more than 30 students weekly. Students with disabilities gain confidence and acceptance, helping to make them feel more a part of the Lemont High School community, while their peer mentors gain expertise in working with individuals with handicaps of all kinds and are given college recommendations based on their work. As this program has progressed, many of the peer leaders involved have begun pursuing careers in Special Education or Social Work. 

“Continued Advanced Placement Stream Research”
Funded at $1,500 — proposal by Karen Aleman 

A previous Educational Foundation grant funded the purchase of chemical analysis kits and colorimeters that have allowed Advanced Placement Environmental Science students to participate in real world research. In both the fall and spring semesters, students collect critical data on water quality at Camp Sagawau Nature Center in Lemont. Students sift through samples, work in teams to identify organisms, and become ‘citizen scientists.’ This grant will fund the transportation to Camp Sagawau for additional student research, as they continue to benefit from real world research and further experience with laboratory field techniques.

“Discipline Free Dance”
Funded at $2,000 — proposal by Brent Gagnon & John Kennedy

The Discipline Free Dance is an annual event that serves as a reward for Lemont High School students who consistently demonstrate the ability to make the “right” choices. This invitation-only event provides an incentive for students to make good decisions. This much-anticipated event includes a DJ, games and many prizes, and has a tremendous impact on the school’s climate and culture. This grant will underwrite the cost of the 2013 Discipline Free Dance, including the DJ, supplies, and prizes for the attendees.

“Lincoln List 2013”
Funded at $720 — proposal by Cathy Mayer

Lemont High School’s Learning Resource Center has used the list of Abraham Lincoln Award titles as a guide to purchase titles for the LRC since 2009. The Lincoln List encourages students to read for personal satisfaction, and books included on that annual list help support students’ personal reading interests. Titles are displayed in the LRC and featured in monthly book discussions with the LRC Director; students who read four or more titles on the list are eligible to vote for and nominate titles for the Lincoln List. This grant will fund the purchase of copies of the 2013 Lincoln List books, exposing students to popular new young adult authors. 

“Navigating Through the Technology Classroom - Part 3”
Funded at $9,824 — proposal by Kathy Young

Previous Educational Foundation grants have helped Lemont High School’s Mathematics Department transition to TI-Nspire graphing calculators by providing funding for six TI-Nspire Navigation Systems. During the 2012-13 school, 95 percent of Lemont students will be utilizing TI-Nspire calculators. This grant will fund four more systems, equipping each of the school’s Math classrooms with TI-Nspire capabilities. TI-Nspire systems allow students to receive files on their calculators wirelessly from their teachers. Instructors can monitor the work students are completing on their TI-Nspires, which helps them assess students more easily, and allows them to compare and contrast all students’ work simultaneously and redirect instruction based on the students’ performance.

“Podcasting & Science: Taking Learning Beyond the Classroom”
Funded at $2,255 — proposal by Scott Collins, Tim Plotke, Tim Leffler & Cathy Mayer 

During the 2011-12 school year, Lemont High School implemented the Haiku Learning Management System, an online course management system that helped extend classrooms beyond campus. All Lemont teachers utilize Haiku to communicate with their students, and this proposal provides the opportunity for teachers in the Science Department to integrate podcasting into their instruction. This grant will cover the purchase of six sets of hardware and software that will allow teachers to create podcasts and upload them to Haiku, making curricular content available to students at anytime from anywhere. Generally 10 minutes or less in length, podcasts can supplement in-class lectures and give teachers the chance to extend the amount of time they get with students.

“Pre-Prom Assembly”
Funded at $3,000 — proposal by Bobbe Fash

Each year, just before the school’s Prom, all Lemont High School students attend the Pre-Prom Assembly. The program benefits the entire student body by reinforcing valuable concepts students have been taught throughout their lives. This grant will fund a guest speaker, guest group or presentation that will address all students about considering the consequences of their actions, and the importance of making smart choices regarding many of the dangers that teenagers currently face.

Funded at $600 — proposal by Bill Bozue

In December 2011, Lemont High School’s Physical Education Department offered an introductory self-defense course to all sophomore, junior and senior female students. The course, conducted by Ken Smith of Modern Arnis Academy (Lockport), gave students important insight on how to defend themselves in threatening or dangerous situations. More than 240 students took part in the instruction, and the response was overwhelming positive, as they learned about unfortunate realities that exist in society and how to protect themselves. Smith, who has 25 years of experience as an instructor, volunteered his time in 2011, but this grant will allow the school to compensate him for 24 class periods of instruction in Winter 2012.

“Transfer Orientation Day”
Funded at $280 — proposal by the Guidance Department

On Freshman Orientation Day in August 2011, the Guidance Department piloted a two-hour orientation program for transfer students. Nearly every transfer student attended and enjoyed the benefit of being on campus before their first day of school. Student surveys indicated that they wanted more time to explore the building with student guides and additional follow-up once the school year commenced. This grant will expand the activities on “Transfer Day” and schedule monthly follow-up meetings with transfer students to foster a stronger connection to the Lemont High School community.

“We See College in YOUR Future - Year 5”
Funded at $5,000 — proposal by Kathy Brockett
Aiding students on the cusp of achieving a composite ACT score that would qualify them for a four-year college or university, this grant will cover half the cost of the ExcelEdge ACT 36 prep course for 20 students, and the full cost of the class for 10 students. The eight-week course helps students become familiar with the ACT, providing them with test taking strategies to help them achieve a higher ACT score. The goal is to increase the scores of the targeted students to at least 18, which will make them eligible for entry to a four-year college or university and help the school in its goal of having 85 percent of all its seniors reach that mark..