Stories

Social Justice at Sauk Trail: Learning Through Leadership

The Foundation is sharing stories from grant and scholarship recipients to show how funding makes an impact. Hear how MCPASD staff, teachers and students are using their grants and scholarships, and see how your dollars make a difference!

Amy Galassi, an advanced learning specialist, and Kirsten Haag, a social worker, received a $610 grant for a program called Learning Through Leadership at Sauk Trail.

They received the grant in 2017 and have used it to pay for and promote several projects.

“This grant allowed a diverse group of students to learn about issues pertaining to social justice that impact their community both inside and outside of school,” Galassi says. “Through various service-learning projects students were empowered to identify ways they can positively effect change. Their biggest accomplishment was acquiring and dedicating a Buddy Bench at Sauk Trail.”

Galassi explains how the grant shaped how they teach.

“This grant has helped us teach the students through a lens of equity,” she says. “When students are able to see how their contributions, no matter how small, can make a difference in our community they feel empowered to continue. Receiving this grant has helped us see the importance of continuing to frame lessons though this vision.”

Another benefit has been how the service-learning projects inspired students to do even more.

“Over the course of the year, we saw students that typically had not been in positions of leadership taking initiative and driving the planning and problem solving processes in the projects,” Galassi explains. “As their confidence grew, they began to step outside their comfort zones and try new roles and experiences.”

MCPASD staff, teachers and students who are interested in applying for an Education Foundation grant or scholarship can contact Perry Hibner. To donate to the Foundation, use the link on our donations page or mail a check to MCPASD Education Foundation, c/o Perry Hibner, 7106 South Avenue, Middleton, WI 53562. Thank you!    

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Practicing Yoga at Park

The Foundation is sharing stories from grant and scholarship recipients to show how funding makes an impact. Hear how MCPASD staff, teachers and students are using their grants and scholarships, and see how your dollars make a difference!

Luke Kramer, a fourth grade teacher at Park, received a $500 grant to develop a “yoga in the classroom” program.

“With this grant I purchased a classroom set of yoga mats,” Kramer says. “This grant has allowed students to slow down the pace of their busy day to be mindful of their breath and their bodies. The grant gave me the funds to provide students with a tool that engages them more fully in the practice of yoga.”

He sees benefits to student learning in ways he didn’t expect.

“In addition to more formal yoga practices, the mats also provide students with flexible seating during work time,” he says. “They can lay down on a comfortable surface to work, thus keeping them much more engaged and comfortable than if they were working at their desk all day!”

He has noticed the difference it’s made for his students as well as personally.

“I feel more compelled to take time to work with students on their mindful practices in the classroom,” Kramer explains. “Students look forward to this time and are significantly more focused on their classwork. As a teacher, I feel more of a sense of calm when interacting with students, especially in potentially high-stress situations.”

MCPASD staff, teachers and students who are interested in applying for an Education Foundation grant or scholarship can contact Perry Hibner. To donate to the Foundation, use the link on our donations page or mail a check to MCPASD Education Foundation, c/o Perry Hibner, 7106 South Avenue, Middleton, WI 53562. Thank you!    

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Teaching students how to code at Middleton High School

The Foundation is sharing stories from grant and scholarship recipients to show how funding makes an impact. Hear how MCPASD staff, teachers and students are using their grants and scholarships, and see how your dollars make a difference!

Lori Hunt, a computer science teacher at Middleton High School, received a $240 grant to fund student participation in a programming competition.

“We had 20 students travel to Marquette University in Milwaukee to participate in a programming competition,” Hunt says.

The experience inspired students to start a competition of their own.

“The students who participated decided to start a computer science club at MHS, where they are planning on hosting programming competitions of our own after the AP tests are over,” Hunt explains. “They plan on using the same software they saw at the competition and creating multiple levels for students in a variety of programming classes. This will be a fun way for my students to participate in a competition without having to travel.”

The competitive aspect was not the only appealing part for her students.

“The students learned a lot about different coding techniques,” she adds. “They were also able to network with other students from around the state, and with MU professors and students.”

She says the grant was especially helpful for students who otherwise could not have participated due to financial or physical disabilities.

“The money provided by this grant made it possible for students to do something that inspired them and resulted in higher self-efficacy and sociability,” Hunt adds. “I can’t thank the Foundation enough for making this happen!”

To donate to the Foundation, use the link on our donations page or mail a check to MCPASD Education Foundation, c/o Perry Hibner, 7106 South Avenue, Middleton, WI 53562. Thank you!    

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Teaching Students about Conditions in Cuba

The Foundation is sharing stories from grant and scholarship recipients to show how funding makes an impact. Hear how MCPASD staff, teachers and students are using their grants and scholarships, and see how your dollars make a difference!

Janel Anderson, a social studies teacher at Middleton High School, received a $500 grant to study in Cuba.

 The grant money was used towards my tuition and travel expenses for a two-week study in Cuba,” Anderson explains.

She attended Tulane University’s Cuban Culture & Society Teacher Institute 2018.

“I have shared with students on an ongoing basis the impact of the revolution and the current conditions,” Anderson says.

Attending the institute has influenced how Anderson teaches. In particular, she says, her experience has helped her share more in areas including the growth of tourism on the economy, environment and the political pressures; the attitudes of Cubans regarding Americans and U.S. policies regarding travel and embargo; and life under a socialist regime, including scarcity and the lack of understanding about cost, profit, business planning and entrepreneurship.

Anderson says sharing what she learned in turn helps students better understand the perceptions that Cubans have of the U.S. and U.S. policy.

“Students have gained authentic and human insights into the often misunderstood island,” Anderson says. “They have made connections between their lives and the lives of Cubans.”

She also shows students the photos, videos, music and artifacts she gathered on her Cuban trip.

Anderson has given presentations and helped build curriculum in both Latin American Studies and Economics classes at Middleton High School. She has also presented at professional conferences on the impact of teacher travel and the use of education as a tool of the socialist revolution in Cuba.

“I have developed relationships with teachers at Spanish immersion schools in Milwaukee as well as Louisiana, Ohio and Illinois,” Anderson adds. “These colleagues continue to share their work with me so that I can incorporate it into my classes.”

Anderson is grateful for the message behind the grant.

“This grant was critical not only in helping me fund my travel but even more importantly it communicated to me that my community and school district value my growth as a professional,” Anderson says. “The grant let me know that I am supported and encouraged to continue looking for powerful experiences like this to improve my practice.”

MCPASD staff, teachers and students who are interested in applying for an Education Foundation grant or scholarship can contact Perry Hibner. To donate to the Foundation, use the link on our donations page, or mail a check to MCPASD Education Foundation, c/o Perry Hibner, 7106 South Avenue, Middleton, WI 53562. Thank you!

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Inspiring inquiry-based research at Park

The Foundation is sharing stories from grant and scholarship recipients to show how funding makes an impact. Hear how MCPASD staff, teachers and students are using their grants and scholarships, and see how your dollars make a difference!

Karla Freimuth, a third grade teacher at Park, received a grant for purchasing robotics, construction and technology resources for students to use for inquiry-based research.

She developed a program called Inquiry Hour to help students learn to develop independent or group inquiries, create projects and share their findings.

“The students are enjoying Inquiry Hour!” Freimuth says. “The third grade teachers started the year developing skills that are important for inquiry-based research. We used lessons from the book Comprehension and Collaboration: Inquiry Circles in Action to model the inquiry process and teach the skills necessary to be successful wonderers and researchers. Teachers also modelled their own inquiry process through a social studies unit on maps.”

She explains how students then worked in teams to develop questions related to maps that they wished to explore further, including early maps, the Earth’s oceans and Africa. Students moved through a four-step inquiry process – question, research, create, share – working individually and in groups to create posters. Students then shared their findings with classmates and parents.

“In mid-October, students in my class began participating in an open-ended Inquiry Hour,” Freimuth adds. “For this first independent inquiry project, students learned how to create Google slides, and they were very excited.”

She says students’ topics ranged from the big bang theory and Egyptian pyramids to karate and guinea pigs.

“The students were completely immersed in their research,” Freimuth adds. “Many asked if they could work on their research and Google slides at home.”

Now, students are developing STEM-related inquiry questions.

“During the last few weeks, students spent time in groups creating different types of bridges,” Freimuth explains. “They are using materials purchased from the grant to develop other STEM-related research questions. One student built her own bridge out of Popsicle sticks at home and brought it in to share with her peers. Engagement level has been high. The students enjoy having a voice and choice in their learning.”

For the rest of the school year, students will participate in Inquiry Hour weekly.

“It’s been fun and rewarding to see their curious minds at work!” Freimuth says.

MCPASD staff, teachers and students who are interested in applying for an Education Foundation grant or scholarship can contact Perry Hibner. To donate to the Foundation, use the link on our donations page, or mail a check to MCPASD Education Foundation, c/o Perry Hibner, 7106 South Avenue, Middleton, WI 53562. Thank you!

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Practicing Mindfulness at Kromrey

The Foundation is sharing stories from grant and scholarship recipients to show how funding makes an impact. Hear how MCPASD staff, teachers and students are using their grants and scholarships, and see how your dollars make a difference!

Kerry Burke, a school counselor at Kromrey, received a $575 grant for a mindfulness cart.

“Thanks to the Education Foundation’s generous support, I purchased supplies for a mindfulness cart for Kromrey Middle School in the fall of 2017,” Burke says. “The cart consists of 30 yoga mats on a large rolling cart with storage space for the yoga mats. I also purchased a chime and singing bowl for use during mindfulness practice with students.”

Burke explains how Kromrey students and staff are benefiting from the cart.

“As a school counselor, having our mindfulness cart as a resource opens up more opportunities for practicing mindfulness with students in different locations around our school,” Burke says. “The cart is primarily used by Student Services staff for mindfulness groups with students, but it is also available for teachers and other staff to check out to use with their students.”

She says the grant has helped Kromrey students learn by enabling them to experience the advantages of mindfulness.

“Mindfulness practices helps to improve student engagement and well-being,” Burke explains. “By developing these skills with our students, our goal is to help students improve attention, emotion regulation and academic performance. Mindfulness can help reduce stress and is a trauma-sensitive approach to working with struggling students. By helping students gain a sense of calm and focus, we are promoting success for all students in the classroom.”

Burke appreciates what the grant has allowed her to do at Kromrey.

“Thank you for this opportunity!” she says.

MCPASD staff, teachers and students who are interested in applying for an Education Foundation grant or scholarship can contact Perry Hibner. To donate to the Foundation, use the link on our donations page or mail a check to MCPASD Education Foundation, c/o Perry Hibner, 7106 South Avenue, Middleton, WI 53562. Thank you!

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Donate to the Foundation – and Double Your Impact!

Thanks to the generosity of a local resident, up to $10,000 in total donations to the Foundation between now and December 31 will be matched!  Please donate today to double your gift and to help us build on the strong momentum of support in the district and community.

Our donors’ generous support helped us achieve several milestones this year, including

  • Nearly $350,000 in assets under management, with $50,097 added this year
  • Nearly $20,000 in grants awarded to 12 teachers and staff
  • $2,750 awarded in scholarships to 5 graduating seniors, including some who are the first in their families to attend college
  • Nearly $10,000 raised for initiatives such as the Weekend Food Program that provided meals for more than 160 students in need at all six district elementary schools.

With your help, the Education Foundation can do even more to support the district’s efforts to improve student achievement across all demographic groups!  Our 2019 goals are to expand innovation grants to teachers and staff, further grow our endowment and fund initiatives including:

  • Grow Your Own: Award college students and staff development funding to increase the number of teachers of color
  • High School Summer Equity Institute: Fund participation for students in this national program
  • Performing Arts: Provide performing arts experiences to students and increase participation by underrepresented group

Use the link below to donate online, or mail a check to MCPASD Education Foundation, c/o Perry Hibner, 7106 South Avenue, Middleton, WI 53562. We are a non-profit 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization, allowing your donation to be deductible as allowed by the IRS.

Thank you for your support!

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Tree Lot Opens November 23!

The tree lot to benefit the MCPASD Education Foundation and Middleton High School DECA program will open on Friday, Nov. 23 and is scheduled to remain open for about three weeks.

This is the fourth year the lot has been located in the MHS parking lot across from the tennis courts. John Docter, the owner of Docter Evergreens, approached the District in 2015 about a tree lot and has donated more than $15,000 to the Foundation and MHS DECA program over the past three years.

Docter will still supply trees, wreaths, garland and other items for the lot, but the Foundation will run the lot and handle all funds. Credit card payments will be accepted along with checks and cash. High school students, under the supervision of MHS business teacher and DECA adviser Robert Hutchison, will again work the lot.

Docter said close to 500 trees were sold each of the past two years. He also said there will again be a large selection of firs, spruces, pines and hemlocks, with prices ranging from $20 to $100 depending on the size and quality of each tree.

Normal operating hours will be 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. on weekdays and 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekends. The lot is tentatively scheduled to close on Monday, Dec. 10.

 

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Sauk Trail Celebrates Mexican Traditions

With a grant from the district’s Education Foundation, two Sauk Trail teachers brought a colorful, Mexican culture lesson to the school to demonstrate how ancestors who have passed continue to be remembered and honored by their friends and families.

First grade teachers Kristina Mendiola and Paige Bessick, instructors in the Two-way Immersion program where students are taught in English for half the day and Spanish for the other half, presented a heritage demonstration on Mexico’s Day of the Dead on Oct. 31.

The holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember those who have died. Traditions connected with the holiday include building private altars, called ofrendas, which feature photos and favorite foods of the departed.

Mendiola used a portion of the $1,000 Education Foundation inspiration grant to purchase authentic Mexican decorations, clothing, and classroom books during a recent trip to Mexico. “I brought back many things for the kids that you can’t get here or online, like traditional skull artwork, art pieces, instruments, and wooden whisks for making Mexican hot chocolate,” she says.

“Some of the books she brought back are gorgeous,” Bessick adds. “They’re not the typical translated books we see here, but real Spanish books, directly from the Mexican people. And our money goes so much further there.”

First graders with a Mexican heritage were awed by the celebration materials. “You just can’t describe how our kids feel when they see these things,” Mendiola says. “Many kids have these artful things in their homes. They beam with pride as they show their classmates and talk about them and their families’ traditions with the other students. They become the teachers and the experts in the classroom. It’s an invaluable experience for them—and for us!”

Bessick says the Day of the Dead celebration coincides with Sauk Trail’s traditional Halloween parade open to parents and siblings. “We practiced singing Mexican songs, reading poems, making artwork and building an altar,” she said. “We also added Mexican bread and hot chocolate to the festivities.”

“The children excitedly talked about their ancestors who have died and we all heard wonderful stories about grandparents, and even pets, who are gone,” Mendiola adds. “It’s a happy day, celebrating peoples’ lives. It’s not scary like Halloween.”

Both agreed that the Immersion project has been their best year ever working as educators. “Beyond the curriculum, what we’re seeing is our Spanish kids taking leadership roles and co-teaching with us,” Bessick says. “They are so proud of their heritage and are excited to share it.”

Two-way Immersion is a form of dual language education in which half of the students in each classroom come from Spanish-speaking homes and the other half come from English-speaking homes (or homes where another language is spoken). All students learn English and Spanish through academic content.

The program at Sauk Trail is a 50-50, two-teacher model. Students receive 50 percent of their academic instruction in Spanish and 50 percent of it in English. One teacher teaches in Spanish and the other in English. Students switch teachers partway through the day.

“The most rewarding aspect of two-way immersion is seeing the children embrace their identities as bilingual individuals and expressing their excitement to learn a new language,” says Mandi Sersch-Morstad, Director of Bilingual Services. “They are growing in their confidence and making great progress.”

The District and parents embrace the program. “There is a plethora of research about the cognitive benefits of being bilingual, which leads to positive academic outcomes for students and open many future doors,” Sersch-Morstad adds. ”We also see the benefit of students (both those who are in the program and those who are not) experiencing an environment in which a language other than English is elevated and given value. This has an impact on how students view the world, and come to understand that there are multiple ways of communicating with one another that are all beautiful and valuable in their own way.”

Reported by Tom Kobinsky

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Foundation Trivia at the Middleton Good Neighbor Festival a Success!

The Good Neighbor Festival has brought our community together for over 50 years, to support many charitable organizations.  Once again this year, The Foundation sponsored a trivia contest during the festival.  This year, there were two sessions of trivia – one with a Harry Potter theme!

The contest was held on Saturday, August 25 in the VFW tent on the festival grounds in Fireman’s Park in Middleton.

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Foundation Updates School Board

Director of Communications Perry Hibner, who formerly was the executive director for the Education Foundation and now serves on the board, gave an update on the organization’s efforts over the past year at the Board of Education regular meeting on Monday, June 11.

Hibner noted that the Foundation has raised more than $350,000 over the past four years. Its general endowment fund with Madison Community Foundation is nearing $300,000, while a second endowment fund with MCF, which was established last year, to help disadvantaged students, is already at $35,000. The Foundation also has close to $90,000 in cash reserves.

The Foundation awarded 10 grants worth $11,000 to District schools in April 2018. The District also received $6,000 in restricted funds from the Foundation for achievement gap efforts, Hibner said. The Foundation has awarded 85 grants worth nearly $90,000 since 2013 and every District school has received multiple grants.

The Foundation has awarded scholarships to graduating seniors during the past four years. Three students — Chann Bowman, Juliana Castillo and Kian Djamali — received Foundation scholarships this year. The Foundation has awarded more than $11,000 in scholarships over the past four years, Hibner said.

Another highlight in 2018 included raising more than $15,000 for the Weekend Food Program, which provided meals and snacks for more than 160 students in need at all six of the District’s elementary schools. Hibner thanked area churches for their help getting the program started.

The Foundation also participated in the Good Neighbor Festival parade, held a trivia contest at the Good Neighbor Festival, co-host the tree lot at MHS for the third straight year, sponsored 2005 MHS graduate Amanda Schmitt’s presentation during Human Rights Week at MHS and raised about $28,000 as part of its annual appeal, which was nearly double what it raised the year before.

The Foundation continues to work to create more awareness of what they are doing and ways the community can financially support, Hibner said. The Foundation has created a Legacy Society for individuals or families who wish to leave a gift to the Foundation in their will or estate.

Five other Foundation board members — George Mavroulis, Anne Bauer, Sean Hyland, Tom Kobinsky and Ellen Lindgren — also were present for the presentation on Monday  night.

“Everyone on the Foundation board is dedicated to inspiring our students and staff,”  Hibner said. “They give so much time and financial support to our District. We are better because of their efforts.”

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Sauk Trail Students Make Music with Foundation Grant

Sauk Trail students had the opportunity in their end-of-the year concerts to make music with professional jazz musicians on May 23.

The MCPASD Education Foundation sponsored the concerts through a 2018 inspiration grant of $750. Children sang, played keyboards, drums, and some improvised on music teacher John Becker’s vibraphone instrument. Fourth-grade orchestra students also had the chance to improvise on their string instruments. 

Some of the original music and lyrics performed reinforced the “Sauk Trail Way” learning and behavior goals, sung in English and in Spanish. 

The live band working with the students included Middleton residents Laurie Lang Croasdale, bass, and Chris Sandoval, drums.  Rounding out the group were Paul Hastil on piano, and Becker on vibes and percussion.  Staff member and Foundation Board member Tom Kobinsky also sat in on guitar for two of the three performances.

“I wish to again thank the Education Foundation for making these concerts possible. It was a very memorable, joyful and inspiring experience for our all of our kids and families,” Becker said.

 

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Foundation to Participate in Good Neighbor Festival Parade

The Education Foundation and Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District will once again have an entry in the Middleton Good Neighbor Festival parade, and officials are encouraging adults and their children to participate.

More than 50 Foundation board members, along with District staff and their children, have participated each of the past two years. The District will provide a gift to anyone who participates. To be eligible, you must e-mail Communications Director Perry Hibner by August 10. T-shirts have been provided the past two years.
This year’s parade will take place on Sunday, August 26, starting at noon. The parade starts on University Avenue at Maple Street, and continues west along University to Parmenter Street, where the route turns north before entering the festival grounds at Fireman’s Park via Lee Street.

The District will have a yellow bus for those who prefer to ride. Parade officials are requesting that participants begin lining up at 11 a.m. and be ready to start by 11:45. The location of the bus in the parade hasn’t been determined yet, however, the District has typically been placed near the start of the parade next to the MHS band.

Superintendent and Foundation board member George Mavroulis served as the parade marshal in 2016, while former Board of Education member and Foundation board member Ellen Lindgren and communications assistant Ruth Bachmeier received Good Neighbor awards.

The Foundation will also hold its second annual Trivia Contest on the GNF grounds on Saturday, August 25. Last year, 10 teams and nearly 60 people participated in the inaugural event.

This year’s theme is Mardi Gras. Visit the Good Neighbor Festival website to learn more.

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Seniors Awarded Foundation Scholarships

Seniors Chan Bowman, Juliana Castillo and and Kian Djamali were awarded 2018 Education Foundation scholarships during the annual Scholarship Night at the Performing Arts Center on Wednesday, May 16.

Foundation board member and MCPASD Director of Communications Perry Hibner awarded Djamali with a $500 scholarship renewable for up to four years. Previous winners of the scholarship are Jessica Wang (2017), Rebecca Turk (2016) and Dana Angeli Rodriguez (2015).

Bowman was awarded a Futures Scholar scholarship for $1,250 from the Foundation. Hibner also presented that award. It is the second year the Foundation has offered the scholarship. Last year’s winner was Andrea Aranda Sanchez.

Hibner also awarded Castillo the Foundation Don Johnson Scholarship in the amount of $750. The scholarship is a one-time award through funds raised by the Foundation after the former MCPASD superintendent retired.

Chan Bowman

Bowman has mentored at elementary schools throughout his high school career. He has been a Minority Student Achievement Network scholar the past two years and also serves as the president of the Black Student Union at MHS. Among his honors are a YWCA Racial Justice Summit Speaker Award and a Martin Luther King Jr. Award this past year. He played basketball for four years at MHS.

Juliana Castillo

Castillo has been a member of the Model United Nations Club at MHS for four years and National Honor Society the past two years. She has served as a counselor at Wolf Camp and Camp Invention, both held at Sauk Trail. She also tutors and rings the bell for the Red Cross. She works at Culver’s and in the winter on the Polar Express. She received the Advanced Placement Scholar Award as a junior and also received the Presidents Volunteer Service Award from the Hugh O’Brien Youth Leadership Camp. She also participated in track and field for four years and the ski and snowboard teams for three years.

Djamali played the trumpet in concert and jazz bands for four years at MHS. He has participated in state honors band and orchestra the past two years and also in UW-Madison’s high school honors jazz band. He has served as a leader in Link Crew, a mentoring program to help freshmen transition to the high school, and been a four-year member of the Model United Nations Club.

Kian Djamali

He has done academic tutoring through National Honor Society and also served as a summer soccer coach. He has extensive work experience at Sofra Family Bistro, Madison Futsal and as a soccer referee. He also played soccer for four years at MHS.

 “This is always a special night and we were thrilled to see Chan, Juliana and Kian honored,” Hibner said. “All three are very deserving and we can’t wait to see what the future brings for each of them.”

A committee of MHS staff members selected Bowman, Castillo and Djamali based on criteria provided by the Foundation’s board of directors.

Foundation board members Zach Galin and Ellen Lindgren also sponsored scholarships. Marie Mayers received the Galin Education Scholarship, while Christabel Sackey received the Helping Hand Scholarship from Lindgren.

The Education Foundation was formed in 2011 to provide inspiring experiences for District students and staff. The Foundation has raised nearly $300,000 for its general endowment fund through Madison Community Foundation and another $40,000 for a second endowment fund to benefit disadvantaged students. The Foundation has also provided nearly $100,000 in grants and other donations to the District.

The Foundation recently awarded nine grants to staff and another grant to SPARK, a parent-led group that provides support, education, and a social outlet for parents of a child or children with special needs. The Foundation has awarded inspiration grants to staff totaling more than $83,000 since 2013. Every school in the District has received multiple grants.

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Foundation Awards Inspiration Grants in Annual Bus Tour

The MCPASD Education Foundation held its favorite day of the year on Wednesday, April 25, awarding inspiration grants to educators throughout the school district.

The Foundation awarded ten inspiration grants worth $11,273 as part of its bus tour. In addition, the Foundation announced it will provide more than $6,000 to the District to address equity and achievment gap efforts across all levels, chair Courtney Ward-Reichard announced.

Staff members to receive grants included Clark Street Community School’s Jason Pertzborn, Park’s Karla Freimuth, Kromrey’s Brenda Weiss, Sauk Trail’s John Becker, Stephanie Spence, Barb Beyer, Paige Bessick and Kristina Mendiola and Middleton High School’s Gust Athanas, Lori Hunt and Janel Anderson.

In addition, Kristin Voss and Liza Hellenbrand were awarded a grant for SPARK, a parent-led group that provides support, education, and a social outlet for parents of a child or children with special needs.

The Foundation has now awarded out more than 80 grants totaling approximately $89,000 since it begin issuing grants in 2013. Every District school has received multiple grants.

The 2-hour yellow bus tour included stops at each school that received grants. MHS band members played “On Wisconsin” in each of the schools before Ward-Reichard presented each recipient with flowers donated by Pick ‘n Save. The SPARK grant will be presented at its end-of-the-year picnic on May 2, Director of Communications and Foundation board member Perry Hibner said.

Other Foundation board members who attended part or all of the celebration included Superintendent George Mavroulis, treasurer Steph Mueller, secretary Tom Kobinsky and board members Purna Byraiah,  Ellen Lindgren and Hibner.

Mavroulis, Hibner, Anne Bauer, Chris Denney and Ann Ruscher served on the task group that evaluated the grant applications this year. Hibner noted it is the fourth consecutive time the Foundation was able to fully fund every grant that was selected during a cycle.

  • Pertzborn received $2,500 to purchase a vending trailer for use in a seminar where students grow and sell garden produce, as well as for other future entrepreneurial programs. The State Bank of Cross Plains funded $1,250 of the grant amount.
  • Freimuth, a third-grade teacher, received $893 to purchase robotics, construction and technology kids for students to use for inquiry-based research and learning to develop independent or group inquiries and create projects to product and share their findings.
  • Weiss received $890 to purchase Finch Robots that students can program using programming languages such as Python, Snap! and Scratch. Using physical robots combined with the computer brings programming concepts to life for students, Weiss noted.
  • Becker received $750 to fund a guest performing artist for the school’s spring concerts, allowing students the opportunity to improvise African and jazz styles.
  • Bessick and Mendiola received $1,000 to support the new Two-Way Immersion program with native language resources and an all-school celebration. This grant was funded in part by donations to celebrate the retirement of former Superintendent Don Johnson.
  • Spence and Beyer received $750 to support the development of multi-age student groups (Wolf Dens) led by 1-2 staff members. These Wolf Dens will meet monthly and participate in planned activities to promote student engagement and relationships.
  • Hunt received $240 to support student participation in an advanced computer programming competition at Marquette University in Milwaukee, where students write a variety of programs as a team utilizing their creativity and problem-solving.
  • Anderson received $500 to attend a summer study program in Cuba where she will gather information and artifacts for the purpose of developing more interactive and engaging curriculum for International Relations, Latin American studies, and Global Development courses.
  • Athanas received $1,250 for a Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction certification, which he will use to expand mindfulness and stress reduction programs for students and staff.
  • Hellenbrand and Voss received $2,500 to support SPARK’s reach, including supplies and support for families to participate in events.

Since its inception in 2011, the Foundation has also raised more than $250,000 for its endowment fund though Madison Community Foundation.

If you would like to contribute to the Foundation, please use the link to the right. If you would like to sponsor a grant in 2016, please e-mail Hibner or call him at 829-9014

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Annual Appeal Raises Nearly $30,000

The MCPASD Education Foundation raised more than $28,000 in its 2017 annual appeal campaign, board president Courtney Ward-Reichard announced recently.

The amount is the most the Foundation has raised in the five years it has held an annual appeal. The previous record was a little more than $14,500, which was raised in 2016.

The appeal included a $5,000 match from Intuit, which creates business and financial management solutions that simplify the business of life for small businesses, consumers and accounting professionals. Intuit also provided a $5,000 match in 2016.

The Foundation also received $5,000 in matching funds from former school board member and Foundation board member Ellen Lindgren and $5,000 from an anonymous donor. In all, nearly 90 families, individuals or businesses gave, a jump of nearly 25 percent over a year ago.

“We are so grateful to our many generous donors,” Ward-Reichard said. “The funds raised will fund inspiring experiences for students throughout our district. We are so excited to see grant applications from district staff later this spring.”

Donors to this year’s appeal who agreed to have their contribution publicized are listed below.

The Education Foundation was established in 2011. The Education Foundation has raised more than $250,000 for its general endowment fund. A second endowment fund was established in 2016 to help disadvantaged students, with a current balance of approximately $30,000. Both funds are held by the Madison Community Foundation.

Since 2013, the Foundation has awarded more than $72,000 in inspiration grants to teachers, students and staff. Every district school has been awarded multiple grants.

2017 Appeal Donors

Businesses

  • Cress Funeral Home
  • Intuit
  • Mad City Moving

Individuals

  • Prakash Balasubramanian
  • Kurt & Anne Bauer
  • Emil & Shawna Bertalot
  • Doug & Michelle Booher
  • Stephen & Danielle Boorstein
  • Adam & Kathleen Borseth
  • Doug & Emily Buck
  • Shuanglin Chen
  • Brian Clark
  • Greg Dahmen
  • Chris Denney
  • Christine Dillon
  • Randall & Kari Eggert
  • Jonathan Ehrhardt
  • Curt & Barbara Fuszard
  • Zach Galin
  • Dyana Gold
  • Chris & Ann Green
  • Deanna Heise
  • Perry & Sheila Hibner
  • Brian & Julie Hornung
  • Kimberly Hughes
  • Mike Davis & Julann Jatczak
  • Michael & Janet Kane
  • Tom & Darcy Kobinsky
  • John & Ruth Kobinsky
  • Julie Kotschevar
  • Jenifer Kraemer
  • Mark & Teresa Kulie
  • Mike & Maggie Lamson
  • Michael Leffel & Stephanie Weix
  • Janet Legare
  • Andy & Pam Lewis
  • Ellen Lindgren
  • Andy & Lindsay Lyons
  • Bob & Courtney Maher
  • Amy Matsumara
  • George & Lisa Mavroulis
  • Brian & Rebbeca Mayhew
  • Brad & Steph Mueller
  • Casey & Patty Newman
  • Chris & Kate Nisbet
  • Marv & Vicki Nonn
  • Shankar Peddinti
  • Jerry & Christine Popenhagen
  • Kevin & Courtney Reichard
  • Bill & Kay Reis
  • Tad & Janet Renfert
  • Bill & Joan Richner
  • Brent & Donna Richter
  • Jeff & Tiffany Roepsch
  • Kurt & Meriel Rongstad
  • Andy & Carrie Roquet
  • Richard & Nicole Sachse
  • Rick and Jill Sanders
  • Gary & Lois Sater
  • David Scher
  • Jeff & Joy Schleusner
  • Gerald & Joan Schultz
  • Ron & Maureen Schwarz
  • Walter and Rachael See
  • Stacy Seiden
  • Meetul & Mary Shah
  • Lynette & David Sheehan
  • Enno Siemsen & Min Li
  • Todd Smith & Jill Bradshaw
  • Matt Squire & Diane Head
  • Kirk & Wendy Strang
  • Louise Summers
  • Tom & Sandi Vandervest
  • Kevin & Melodee Vogt
  • Andrew Wagner
  • Tom & Rose Webber
  • Conrad Wrzesinski
  • Aaron Zutz
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Foundation to sponsor keynote speaker at Human Rights Week

The Education Foundation will sponsor Amanda Schmitt’s presentation at the ninth annual Human Rights Week at Middleton High School in February.

HRW takes place Feb. 12-16. More than 25 people are expected to present. Most presentations run 35 minutes. There are typically two presentations per block. Presentations will be held on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.

Schmitt, a 2005 MHS graduate and art curator in New York, will speak about being part of Time Magazine’s Person of the Year edition. She and other women were part of a piece on the Silence Breakers. The session will begin at 2:20 p.m. on Monday.

Human Rights Week was held in February in 2015 and 2016, but social studies teacher Tim Davis said MHS officials decided to move it back to November in 2016 before returning to February this year.

Members of the organizing committee include Raad Allawi, Megan Andrews, Sophia Grande, Raina Hess, Marcus Knocke, Marissa Munoz, Peter Opitz, Max Prestigiacomo and Jack Rader.

Davis noted that a number of speakers are coming in from around the country along with Haiti.

JD Stier, a human rights activist who worked in the Obama White House, will speak on conflict minerals in the Democratic Republic of Congo on Friday morning. His session is sponsored by a District Global Initiative Grant. A refugee panel including Zarko Draganic of Bosnia, Aqbal Al-Juboori of Iraq and Vlada Ilic of Serbia will be offered on Thursday morning. That session was made possible by a donation by Roger Ervin and Blumont.

Steven Werlin, Cathy Parrill, Rodolphe Eloi and Franck Toussaint will to an 80-minute keynote presentation on development in Haiti on Tuesday morning, while Michael Johnson, the CEO of the Dane County Boys & Girls Club, will present on race and equity in the Madison area on Thursday afternoon.

Check out biographies on all of the presenters at Human Rights Week.

A fair trade sale will again be held, this time on Friday, Nov. 11 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the lobby of the PAC. Products that are labeled fair trade mean the people that produced the product were paid a fair wage and had good working conditions. Groups participating in the Fair Trade Sale include SERRV, Madison-Rafah City Project, Heart of the Sky Fair Trade, Just Coffee, Terra Experience, DOERS Wisconsin, Ethical Trade, Ubuntu Trade, Heart of the Sky Fair Trade, and Trades of Hope.

The sessions are free and open to the public. Human Rights Week is made possible because of the generous support of the MCPASD Global Initiatives Mini-Grant Fund.

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2018 Grant Application Released!

The MCPASD Education Foundation has released its 2018 grant application — download it here.  Applications and recommendations must be received by April 2, 2018 to be considered in the Foundation’s 2018 grant cycle.  Grant recipients will be announced in late April.

Each year, the Foundation reviews the goals of the District and establishes grant goals that align while also recognizing the changing environment and needs within the District. For the 2018 grant cycle, we are seeking grant applications that require full or partial funding between $250 and $2,500. Please thoughtfully consider how the Foundation can help you provide Inspiring Experiences in your school or classroom.

The Foundation is looking to fund grants that are inclusive, innovative and inspiring. We do not want to replace what the District should fund but rather enhance already great projects or help make great ideas become reality.

The Foundation has awarded 72 grants worth more than $72,000 since 2013. Every school in the District has received multiple grants. If you have questions on how to write a successful grant application, please contact Perry Hibner.

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Tree Lot Success!

The tree lot to benefit the MCPASD Education Foundation and Middleton High School DECA program was a great success, with hundreds of trees sold.  This was the third year the lot was operated in the MHS parking lot. John Docter, the owner of Docter Evergreens, approached the District in 2015 about a tree lot and has donated more than $10,000 to the Foundation and DECA program over the past two years.

Docter supplied trees, wreaths, garland and other items for the lot this year, but the Foundation ran the lot and handled all funds. High school students, under the supervision of MHS business teacher and DECA adviser Robert Hutchison, worked at the lot.

This was all John’s idea,” Education Foundation board member and MCPASD Director of Communications Perry Hibner said. “He really wanted to see both organizations benefit even more from the lot. He will continue to play an integral role. We are very excited.”

DECA will use funds raised through the tree lot to help cover the cost for students to compete at district, state, and the International Conference, which will be held in Atlanta in 2018.  The Education Foundation’s portion of the proceeds will support its efforts to provide inspiring experiences to students throughout the District.

Thank you to John Docter, everyone who worked at the lot, and everyone who bought a tree or wreath!

 

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Foundation gives update at Get Moving Middleton

The Education Foundation was the monthly sponsor at the Middleton Chamber of Commerce’s Get Moving Middleton morning meeting on Thursday, Nov. 2 at the Hilton Garden Inn.

Former executive director and current board member Perry Hibner gave a 5-minute presentation. Also in attendance were current board members Tom Kobinsky, George Mavroulis and Steph Mueller, along with former board member Brenda Delabarre.

More than 170 members were in attendance at the 75-minute meeting. Each attendee received a Foundation folder with information about the 70-plus grants the Foundation has awarded since 2013, an updated Bricks to Build a Strong Foundation campaign and information on how to give to the 2017 appeal.

Hibner noted the Foundation raised more than $80,000 in donations in 2014-15 and has raised more than $90,000 in each of the past two years. He said the Foundation has two endowment funds worth more than $260,000 with Madison Community Foundation and has more than $325,000 in assets overall.

He briefly reviewed the grants the Foundation awarded District schools in 2017. He noted every MCPASD student benefited from a $1,000 gift the Foundation made to every school to purchase supplies for Makerspace areas. The $21,000 the Foundation awarded in the spring of 2017 was the most since it began handing out grants in 2013.

Hibner said the Foundation was also thrilled to sponsor Respect Week at MHS in early 2017 and noted every student at the high school participated in some aspect of the event.

He also talked about some of the partnerships the Foundation has established with area businesses, including State Bank of Cross Plains, J.H. Findorff & Son and The UPS Store.

Finally, he provided a brief update on the Foundation’s annual appeal, noting it took less than two weeks to raise $5,000 and receive a match from Intuit for the second straight year.

“We have a very supportive community and we are extremely grateful for the support the past few years,” he said. “The Foundation will continue to provide more inspiring experiences for District students and staff.”

 

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Foundation’s Annual Appeal Underway

The Education Foundation’s 2017 annual appeal has begun and more than 625 letters were sent earlier this month to individuals, families and businesses that have previously donated to the Foundation.

The Foundation has held an annual appeal for the past four years. The Foundation’s fundraising committee has set a goal to raise $20,000 and have at least 100 contributors as part of the 2017 campaign.

The Foundation raised more than $14,500 as part of its 2016 annual appeal, including a generous $5,000 match from Intuit.  Intuit has agreed to match up to $5,000 again this year.

“This is once again a great way for donors to see their contributions maximized,” Foundation board chair Courtney Ward-Reichard said. “We are very appreciative of Intuit’s support.”

Intuit creates business and financial management solutions that simplify the business of life for small businesses, consumers and accounting professionals.

The Education Foundation was established in 2011. The Education Foundation has raised more than $250,000 for an endowment fund it has through Madison Community Foundation. The Foundation has also awarded more than $72,000 in inspirational grants since 2013 to District staff. Every MCPASD school has been awarded multiple grants.

If you didn’t receive a letter but would like to contribute, please use the PayPal donation on the right. If you would like to be added to the Foundation’s mailing list, contact Perry Hibner at phibner@mcpasd.k12.wi.us.

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Bricks to Build a Strong Foundation Campaign Returns!

The MCPASD Education Foundation will once again hold its popular Bricks to Build a Strong Foundation campaign.

New bricks will be added to existing walkways near the front entrances at Glacier Creek and Kromrey that already contain more than 300 engraved bricks that fill more than 550 spaces purchased by individuals, families, businesses and area non-profits in 2014 and ’15.

“We wanted to open up these spaces so that more businesses and individuals can create a legacy in our schools,’’ Foundation board chair Courtney Ward-Reichard said. “An engraved brick allows individuals and businesses to show their support of students in our District in a very tangible way. The funds raised will continue to be used to provide even more inspiring experiences to students throughout the District.’’

Engraved bricks are available in three sizes and cost $100, $200 or $400. The paving is expected to be completed in the summer of 2018, District communications director Perry Hibner said.

An order form is available. Online payments are possible through PayPal, but an order form is required for all purchases. If you would like more information or have additional questions, please call Hibner at 608-829-9014.

The Foundation has already raised close to $250,000 for its general endowment fund and more than $25,000 for a second endowment fund established in the past year to help disadvantaged students, both through Madison Community Foundation. The Foundation has awarded more than 70 grants worth approximately $72,000 since 2013. Every District school has received multiple grants. The next grant recipients will be announced in late April 2018.

“We heard from so many people who didn’t get a brick the last time that it only made sense to bring back this campaign,’’ Hibner said. “My family purchased two bricks as a way to say thank you to the District but also as a way to honor our children and the education they have received here. It was money well-spent.’’

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Foundation Presents Update to Board of Education

Executive director Perry Hibner, along with Education Foundation board members Zach Galin and Tom Kobinsky, updated the Board of Education at its regular meeting on Monday, June 26 on the work of the non-profit organization.

Hibner noted the 15-member, all-volunteer board has now raised close to $250,000 for its general endowment fund with Madison Community Foundation and also started a second fund for disadvantaged students this past year that already has close to $25,000. Hibner pointed out the Foundation has also raised at least $81,000 in donations the past three years, including nearly $15,000 from its annual appeal in 2016, the most it has ever raised.

He briefly reviewed the 12 inspiration grants the Foundation awarded to staff members in April. The Foundation has awarded more than 70 grants worth approximately $72,000 since 2013. He also said each school received $1,000 to purchase Makerspace materials as part of a separate $10,000 gift the Foundation made to the District earlier in the year.

“That’s so exciting because it benefits every school and every student,” he said. “We’ve heard lots of positive feedback from students and staff about this.”

The Foundation also awarded two scholarships to graduating seniors Jessica Wang and Andrea Aranda Sanchez in May. Sanchez and Wang each plan to attend UW-Madison in the fall. The two scholarships will be worth up to $3,250, he said.

Hibner was excited to report the Foundation received 501(c)3 status this past year. He noted this will make it easier for the Foundation to be more responsive to prospective donors who aren’t necessarily interested in seeing their funds go into an endowment fund.

Hibner also thanked Brenda Delabarre, Mathiam Mbow Bill Reis, Rick Sanders and Melodee Vogt, who all either resigned or left the Foundation board after their terms expired over the past year.

Finally, Hibner went over the transition plan as he will be stepping down as executive director in the coming months. The Foundation board plans to take on the administrative duties he has handled and is discussing whether to hire someone in a part-time capacity on a commission basis to raise funds. The plan also includes having Hibner become a member of the Foundation board.

 

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Foundation Awards Scholarships

Seniors Jessica Wang and Andrea Aranda Sanchez, were awarded 2017 Education Foundation scholarships during the annual Scholarship Night at the Performing Arts Center on Wednesday, May 17.

Foundation executive director Perry Hibner presented Wang with a $500 scholarship renewable for up to four years. Previous winners of the scholarship are Rebecca Turk (2016) and Dana Angeli Rodriguez (2015).

Sanchez was awarded a Futures Scholar scholarship for $1,250 from the Foundation. Board member Purna Byraiah presented Sanchez with the award. It is the first year the Foundation has offered this scholarship.

Wang is a member of National Honor Society and earned Advanced Placement Scholar with honors recognition last year. She is also a Bevel Grant recipient and a National Merit commended scholar. She participated in girls tennis, the math team, the MHS band and the HOSA club. She has also volunteered nearly 500 hours with Amigos de las Americas and at St. Mary’s Hospital and has interned with the Wisconsin Institute of Medical Research.

Sanchez was an active member of Key Club and the girls track and field team during her four years at MHS. She also has been recognized for maintaining at least a 3.8 GPA. She will attend UW-Madison in the fall and pursue a degree in business administration.

“We were thrilled to see Jessica and Andrea honored,” Hibner said. “Both are very deserving and we can’t wait to see what the future brings for each of them.”

A committee of MHS staff members selected Wang and Sanchez based on criteria provided by the Foundation’s board of directors.

Foundation board members Zach Galin and Ellen Lindgren also sponsored scholarships. Linnea Dahmen received the Galin Education Foundation Scholarship, while Karla Muchacho Moreno received the Helping Hand Scholarship from Lindgren.

The Education Foundation was formed in 2011 to provide inspiring experiences for District students and staff. The Foundation has raised nearly $250,000 for its endowment fund through Madison Community Foundation and provided another $85,000 in grants and other donations to the District.

The Foundation has awarded more than inspiration grants to staff totaling more than $72,000 since 2013. Every school in the District has received at least two grants.

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Foundation Awards Inspiration Grants

The MCPASD Education Foundation awarded 12 grants worth more than $11,000 as part of its bus tour on Wednesday, April 26. In addition, earlier this year the Foundation provided $10,000 to fund supplies and materials for MakerSpace areas in all district schools, including six elementary schools, two middle schools and two high schools.

The $21,000-plus that was distributed in 2017 is a record for the Foundation, executive director Perry Hibner said.

This year’s Inspiration Grants included:

  • $1,100 to Elm Lawn’s Holly Dregne and Kara Flynn to purchase 15 books along with STEM supplies and resources that will be used by every kindergarten classroom in the school.
  • $700 to Glacier Creek’s Kim Stieber-White to purchase several self-selected, high-interest books for students living in poverty within the school boundaries to combat the summer literacy slide.
  • $575 to Kromrey’s Kerry Burke to purchase 24 yoga mats, a mindfulness chime, a singing owl and a large rolling cart for storage. Staff will also have access to a binder with mindfulness practice scripts for lessons with students.
  • $500 to Middleton High School staff members Molly Meck and Alison Turner to purchase four breakout starter kits, which can be used by students of all ages to work collaboratively to solve a series of critical thinking puzzles. The boxes will be piloted in some advisory classes next year and expanded in 2018-19.
  • $1,000 to Gust Athanas of MHS to pay for training and books that can be used by student services staff to help students and colleagues deal with stress reduction.
  • $1,100 to Northside’s Travis Follen to purchase supplies for multiple gardens. The gardens will help supply the school with fresh produce on a year-round basis.
  • $500 to Park’s Luke Kramer to purchase 25 youth-sized mats to be used by all fourth-grade students in order that they can be introduced to the emotional and physical benefits of yoga.
  • $600 to Park’s Cassie Roberts to purchase two touch screen monitors to be used by all students as part of technology classes at Park and Sunset Ridge.
  • $610 to Sauk Trail’s Amy Galassi and Kirsten Haag to be used by the school’s Ambassador Club to pay for and promote projects, including a Buddy Bench, new student welcome kits, law enforcement appreciation gifts, neighborhood clean-up day, flower crafts for a local retirement home and more.
  • $1,000 to Sunset Ridge help pay for transportation and healthy snacks for Exercise to Achievement, an after-school program at Sunset Ridge Elementary that runs for six weeks and helps students improve their fitness and prepare to participate in the Tri 4 Schools triathlon. The Foundation funded the program at Elm Lawn in 2016.
  • $2,000 to West Middleton’s Shannon Larson to purchase books and other hands-on experiences for students related to science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics.
  • $1,500 to 21st Century eSchool’s Kim Gauen to purchase project materials, supplies and transportation for project-related experiences in the coming year.

The Foundation has now awarded more than 70 grants totaling approximately $72,000 since 2013. Every District school has received multiple grants.

The 2-hour, 30-minute yellow bus tour included stops at most of the schools. MHS band members played “On Wisconsin” in each of the schools before Hibner presented each recipient with flowers donated by Pick n’ Save, and a certificate.

Hibner will be visiting Elm Lawn and Glacier Creek next week to award their grants. A date has not been finalized to award the grant to the 21st Century eSchool.

“We’ve never had to visit so many schools before and it was impossible to get to them all in the short window we had,” Hibner said. “It’s a nice problem to have.  Our bus tours to announce the grants are always an amazing experience for everyone involved. It’s always one of the best days of the year. There’s no better feeling than seeing the looks on the faces of students and staff when the band walks in.

“We are thrilled to be able to help our top-notch teachers transform their innovative and creative ideas into real-life ‘inspiring experiences’ for our students with a grant from the Foundation.”

Other Foundation board members who attended part or all of the celebration included Superintendent George Mavroulis, treasurer Stephanie Mueller, secretary Tom Kobinsky and board members Purna Byraiah, Ellen Lindgren, Janet Hartung Renfert and Rick Sanders.

Mavroulis, Anne Bauer, Zach Galin, Bill Reis and former Foundation board member Melodee Vogt served on the task group that evaluated the grant applications this year. The Foundation received 23 applications from staff. Hibner also noted it is the third consecutive time the Foundation was able to fully fund every grant that was selected during a cycle.

Since its inception in 2011, the Foundation has also raised more than $200,000 for its endowment fund though Madison Community Foundation. If you would like to contribute to the Foundation’s endowment fund, please visit Foundation’s website. If you would like to sponsor a grant in 2016, please e-mail Hibner or call him at 829-9014

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2017 Inspiration Grant Applications

Every year, the MCPASD Education Foundation awards Inspiration Grants throughout our District to support individual schools, teachers and programs.  The Foundation seeks to fund grants that are Inclusive, Innovative and Inspiring. These grants are not intended to replace what the District should fund but rather enhance already great projects or help new ideas become reality.

The application period for the Foundation’s 2017 inspiration grants is now open, and the application can be downloaded here.  Applications and recommendations must be received by April 7, 2017 to be considered for funding this year.  For the 2017 grant cycle, we are seeking grant applications that require full or partial funding between $250 and $5,000.

The Foundation has awarded 63 grants worth more than $52,000 since 2013. Every school in the District has received at least two grants.

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Middleton Future Scholars Fund Established

The MCPASD Education Foundation is excited to announce the Middleton Future Scholars Fund, a new endowment fund to provide an annual scholarship for MCPASD seniors who have overcome signficiant barriers and are pursuing post-secondary education.

The fund was established by the donation of more than $20,000 from an anonymous family in our school district.

The first scholarship will be granted in the spring of 2017, and is expected to be $1,000.  Criteria for the scholarship will be announced by March 2017, and the scholarship will be awarded at the 2017 Middleton High School and Clark Street Community School Scholarship Night on Wednesday, May 17.  Last year, nearly 80 seniors were awarded scholarships on Scholarship Night.

The new fund is held by Madison Community Foundation, as is the Education Foundation’s endowment fund.  Foundation Board Chair Courtney Ward-Reichard said “we are incredibly grateful for the generous donor who established this fund, and look forward to actively soliciting additional funds to grow the fund even more to support this important cause.”

If you are interested in contributing to the Middleton Future Scholars endowment fund, please contact Foundation executive director Perry Hibner at 608-829-9014 or by email.

 

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Intuit Matches Donations to Annual Appeal

The MCPASD Education Foundation has received a $5,000 match for its 2016 annual appeal from Intuit, Inc.

The Foundation has raised approximately $7,500 in its first two annual appeals to the community.

“This is a great way for donors to see their contributions maximized,” Foundation board chair Courtney Ward-Reichard said.

Intuit creates business and financial management solutions that simplify the business of life for small businesses, consumers and accounting professionals.

Its flagship products and services include QuickBooks®, TurboTax® and Mint.com.   Founded in 1983, the company has approximately 7,900 employees with major offices in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, India, Australia and other locations.  Intuit offers employees a generous donation-matching program or provides them with 32 hours off with pay annually to work on charitable programs.

“Intuit continues to work to make a difference in the community and we are excited to have them partner with us,” Education Foundation executive director Perry Hibner said.

The Education Foundation was established in 2011. The Education Foundation has raised more than $200,000 for an endowment fund it has through Madison Community Foundation. The Education Foundation has also awarded more than $36,000 in inspirational grants since 2013 to District staff. Every MCPASD school has been awarded at least two grants. The Foundation has also raised more than $75,000 in grants and pass-through contributions to support District programs.

The Foundation’s appeal letters were sent out in early November. If you didn’t receive a letter but would like to contribute, please contact Hibner at phibner@mcpasd.k12.wi.us.

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See the Harlem Globetrotters and Help the Foundation!

The Harlem Globetrotters are offering tickets at 20-30 percent below the regular price to District staff members and families for their game on Monday, Dec. 26 at 7 p.m. at the Alliant Energy Center. The Harlem Globetrotters are an exhibition basketball team that has been entertaining fans for 90 years with a combination of athleticism, theater, and comedy. They have played more than 26,000 exhibition games in 122 countries and territories. To learn more, please visit the Harlem Globetrotters website.

There is no minimum ticket purchase requirement. Three types of seat locations are available. A separate MAGIC PASS, which includes a 30-minute pre-show event from 5:30 to 6 and has limited capacity, is also available at a discounted price.

Plus, for the first time, a portion of any ticket you purchase will be donated to the MCPASD Education Foundation. The deadline to order tickets is Dec. 22. All tickets ordered after Dec. 2 will be left at the Alliant Energy Center will-call window. Check out this flyer to learn more.  If you have additional questions, please e-mail Stefanie Lamm or call her at 1-800-641-4667 (ext. 1882).

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District receives grant to help MHS athletes

The MCPASD recently received a $1,750 grant from the Madison Area Sports Commission to fund scholarships to potential student-athletes who show a considerable financial need.

The grant was written by Education Foundation secretary Tom Kobinsky and executive director Perry Hibner. Middleton High School athletic director Bob Joers also was instrumental in the application.

It is the first grant the District has been awarded from MASC. A ceremonial check was presented to MHS from MASC vice president Jamie Patrick, MASC senior marketing manager Kate Dale and MASC account manager Brandon Holsteinn at an all-school Homecoming assembly on Thursday, Sept. 22. Kobinsky and fellow Foundation board members Ellen Lindgren and Steph Mueller also attended.

“We’re so proud to assist the Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District in their efforts to provide athletic activities to a broad range of their students,” said Deb Archer, president and CEO of the Madison Area Sports Commission and Greater Madison Convention & Visitors Bureau. “It is truly one of the best parts of the work of the Sports Commission,  knowing these MASC Youth Grants will improve children’s lives.”

Joers said the funds, coupled with those raised from the MHS Booster Club, means about $3,500 will be available to help athletes of limited financial means to pay for fees or other expenses related to playing a sport at MHS.

“This is great news for our student-athletes who might otherwise not be able to afford to play sports at MHS,” Hibner said. “The Foundation plans to continue to solicit funds to help our neediest students. We want to make sure every student in our District has a great experience regardless of socio-economic status.”

MASC awaded more than $14,000 in funding as part of its biannual disbursement. The mission of the MASC Youth Grant Program is to provide opportunities for area children who may have financial limitations so that the can experience the benefits of sports. To date, the program has awarded more than $270,000 to Dane County area youth sports programs.

Other recipients in this cycle included:

Organization Amount Organization Amount
Bob Lynch Boxing Foundation $2,500 Madison Starlings VB Club $2,100
Goodman Community Center $1,000 First Tee of South Central Wis. $2,000
Madison Ice, Inc. $2,000 Warner Park Youth Football $2,000
YMCA of Dane County $1,125

“We’re excited to see the wide range of organizations in this round of  youth grant recipients,” MASC vice president Jamie Patrick said in a statement. “We can’t tell you how great it feels to help these organizations and see their efforts make a real difference in children’s lives.”

The Madison Area Sports Commission was launched in 2010 and charged with elevating the recognition and awareness of sports tourism on the regional economy while also recruiting organizations to hold their events here. MASC is responsible for brining in more than $45 million to the area economy.

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Education Foundation Participates in Good Neighbor Festival

The MCPASD Education Foundation joined the Good Neighbor Festival board of trustees this summer and shared an information booth with the Middleton Chamber of Commerce at the three-day event Aug. 26-28.

The Foundation distributed more than 200 Cardinal Alumni Network lanyards during the festival. The lanyards were available for free to any District graduate.IMG_6559

“It was great seeing so many alumni at the Good Neighbor Festival,” Foundation executive director Perry Hibner said. “We thought providing free lanyards was a great way to help alumni connect, which is what the Cardinal Alumni Network is all about.”

Hibner also gave tours of Kromrey Middle School and Middleton High School throughout the summer to classes holding reunions. If any classes holding a reunion in 2017 are interested in a tour of any of the District schools, please e-mail Hibner (phibner@mcpasd.k12.wi.us).

The Foundation will be hosting a reunion for alumni prior to the Homecoming football game between MHS and Janesville Parker. The game starts at 7 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 23 at Breitenbach Stadium. Refreshments will be served.  Foundation Board Chair Courtney Ward-Reichard said “we are excited to again have a presence at Homecoming, this is a great opportunity to engage with current students and families, as well as alumni — all sharing a common desire to bring more inspiring experiences to students in our District.”

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Foundation Scholarship Awarded to Rebecca Turk

Rebecca Turk, a senior at Clark Street Community School, received the 2016 MCPASD Education Foundation Scholarship during the annual Scholarship Night at the Performing Arts Center on Wednesday, May 18.

CSCS principal Jill Gurtner presented Turk with a $500 scholarship renewable for up to four years.

“I was so excited to hear that I received a scholarship,” Turk said. “It was such a great surprise, and it eased my mind a bit about starting college in the fall. I texted my advisor as soon as I opened the letter because I couldn’t have done it without her. … I am truly grateful.”

It is the second student scholarship the Foundation has awarded. Dana Angeli Rodriguez was named the Foundation’s inaugural scholarship recipient in 2015. Her scholarship was originally for $500, but will also be converted to a renewable scholarship worth up to $2,000, Foundation executive director Perry Hibner said.

Turk plans on attending Madison College. She would like to earn her associate degree and eventually transfer to UW-Madison to become an art teacher.

“I love painting and I want to teach others how to make art,” she said.

Turk was a member of the media and dance clubs while in high school. She also participated in the art show with Gio’s Garden. As a senior, she served as a student ambassador for CSCS. She has also worked at Culver’s in Middleton.

A committee of MHS staff members selected Turk based on criteria provided by the Foundation’s board of directors.

“We are thrilled that Rebecca is our second scholarship recipient,” Hibner said. “She is very deserving and it is our hope that one day she may return to the District as a teacher.”

Turk said her favorite experience in high school was being selected to be the first student intern at CSCS.

“I love helping other people learn about what we do through presentations and outreach, because I really feel like a part of my school community when I help others learn about it,” Turk said.  

The Education Foundation was formed in 2011 to provide inspiring experiences for District students and staff. The Foundation has raised nearly $200,000 for its endowment fund through Madison Community Foundation and provided another $75,000 in grants and other donations to the District.

The Foundation has awarded more than inspirational grants to staff totaling close to $40,000 since 2013. Every school in the District has received at least two grants.

 

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Foundation Elects Officers and Board Members

The Foundation held its annual meeting on July 20, electing new and renewing Board members, as well as electing officers for the coming year.

First, three new members have been added to the Board recently: Superintendent George Mavroulis, Chris Denney and Anne Bauer.

  • Mavroulis became Superintendent of the Middleton Cross Plains Area School District on July 1, and assumed the position on the Foundation Board reserved for the current Superintendent.
  • Denney is a Senior Program and Policy Analyst at Wisconsin Department of Children and Families. He has also worked as a middle school social studies teacher, and has earned Master’s degrees in Teaching and Public Administration.  He has been a volunteer with the Foundation’s Board as an intern for a number of years.
  • Anne Bauer is a member of the Middleton Cross Plains Area School District Board of Education. She has a Master’s Degree in Education, and is a former teacher.

Board members Zach Galin, Rick Sanders and Melodee Vogt were also re-elected to three-year terms.

Officers were also elected for the coming year: Courtney Ward-Reichard as Chair, Zach Galin as Vice-Chair, Stephanie Mueller as Treasurer and Tom Kobinsky as Treasurer.

The Foundation is always looking for energetic and committed individuals to serve on its Board and Committees.  Contact Executive Director Perry Hibner to learn more.

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Foundation Awards 2016 Grants

13083374_1347175111965955_4297629304447246472_nThanks to its generous donors, the MCPASD Education Foundation was able to make more wishes come true for students and staff.

The Foundation awarded 11 grants worth more than $14,000 to eight schools as part of its bus tour on Friday, April 29.

Staff members receiving grants included Elm Lawn’s Amy Holt, Kromrey’s Fred Bartman, Northside’s Carrianne Baumgart and Travis Follen, Park’s Jodi Klare, Sauk Trail’s John Becker, Ann O’Rourke and Amy Galassi and West Middleton’s Erin Lettau.

In addition, an MHS student services team was awarded a grant to help pay for Respect Week, while Tri 4 Schools executive director Katie Hensel received a grant to help with an after school exercise program at Elm Lawn. Also, former staff member Kathy Nieber-Lathrop and four students were awarded separate grants for Clark Street Community School.

It is the first year the Foundation has gone to a single grant cycle. Between 2013-2015, the Foundation held grant cycles twice a year, in the spring and fall.

The Foundation has now awarded more than 60 grants totaling approximately $50,000 since it begin issuing grants in 2013. Every District school has received multiple grants.

The Foundation also plans to award two more grants later this spring, including a $1,250 grant from the State Bank of Cross Plains that focuses on financial literacy and a $500 grant from Galin Education.

To see photos from the event, please visit the District’s Facebook page.

The 2-hour, 30-minute yellow bus tour included stops at all of the schools. MHS band members played “On Wisconsin” in each of the schools before executive director Perry Hibner presented each recipient with flowers donated by Copps and a certificate.

“Our bus tours to announce our teacher grants is always an amazing experience for everyone involved,” Hibner said. “To see the looks on the faces of students and staff when the band walks in and begins playing is priceless.13092022_1347174688632664_2481815196325559165_n

“We are thrilled to be able to help our top-notch teachers transform their innovative and creative ideas into real-life ‘inspiring experiences’ for our students with a grant from the Foundation.”

Other Foundation board members who attended part or all of the celebration included Superintendent Don Johnson, vice chair Rick Sanders treasurer Steph Mueller and members Tom Kobinsky, Bill Reis and Melodee Vogt.

Hibner noted it is the second consecutive time the Foundation was able to fully fund every grant that was selected during a cycle.

Lettau received $980 to purchase two Chromebooks and six licenses to help West Middleton kindergarten students with phonemic awareness, comprehension, fluency, vocabulary and writing.

O’Rourke and Galassi received $1,303 to purchase more materials for a Makerspace that has been available to all Sauk Trail students for the first time during their lunch recess this year. The Makerspace philosophy embraces process-oriented learning and open-ended activities.

13133334_1347175205299279_1403721750800632364_nBecker received a grant of $500 to pay for two professional dance instructors to work with Sauk Trail students in developing the choreography and a vocabulary of dance movements appropriate to hip hop music. Every student at the school will participate and benefit from the program. It is the third time Becker has been awarded a grant from the Foundation.

Klare received $2,500 to develop a butterfly garden, bird sanctuary or another outdoor space. The project will be developed by Park students. The funds will be used to purchase materials, tools, art supplies, structures and any plants that might be needed. It is the second time Klare has written a grant that has been funded by the Foundation.

Baumgart and Follen received $1,500 to purchase tool kits and picture books, pay a speaker and fund a culminating activity for the advisory group, which involves every Northside student and nearly every staff member. The monthly program has been a huge success in its first two years.

Bartman received $1,000 to pay for an end-of-year dinner celebration for mentors, mentees and their families. The dinner is a chance to discuss and celebrate what every Kromrey student has achieved during the school year. More than 30 students received mentoring help this year.

Hensel was awarded $1,000 to help pay for transportation and healthy snacks for Exercise to Achievement, an after-school program at Elm Lawn Elementary that runs for six weeks and helps students improve their fitness and prepare to participate in the Tri 4 Schools triathlon.

Counselor Amy Holt received $500 grant for supplies, a field trip and end-of-year celebration to support a mentoring partnership between MHS students in the Student Voice Union and minority students at Elm Lawn. The program has produced great results in its first year.

Nieber-Lathrop, a master gardener, received $486 to purchase plants and supplies for a student-led seminar at CSCS on the elaborate style of gardening. Students will also visit local sites, learn about native Wisconsin plants and discuss integration of rain garden principles.13119029_1347176028632530_937612504762864006_n

CSCS students Natalie Krogull, Ben Miller, Jenna Studee and Elizabeth Gilliland received $2,000 to develop a community bike shop, bike mechanics program and bike riding club that could lead to a business opportunity. Funds will be used to purchase five workstations, a bike repair kit and general supplies.

A grant of $3,000 will pay community presenters, purchase art supplies and fund publicity for Respect Week, which will return to MHS for the first time in years and take place the week of Nov. 28-Dec. 2, 2016. Every teacher and student at MHS is expected to participate.

Since its inception in 2011, the Foundation has also raised nearly $200,000 for its endowment fund though Madison Community Foundation. If you would like to contribute to the Foundation’s endowment fund, please visit Foundation’s website. If you would like to sponsor a grant in 2016, please e-mail Foundation executive director Perry Hibner or call him at 829-9014

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Inaugural Partners in Education Luncheon a Huge Hit!

The Education Foundation held its inaugural Partners in Education (PIE) Celebration Luncheon on Monday, Jan. 25 at the Kromrey Middle School cafeteria and more than 150 attended.

The event was an opportunity to thank donors while also creating additional awareness about what the Foundation has accomplished since it was formed in 2011, executive director Perry Hibner said.

Hibner is still waiting on a few expenses, but he expects that the event will net the Foundation more than $4,000.

Sponsors for the event included Galin Education, J.H. Findorff & Son and Madison Community Foundation. Sprecher’s Restaurant also sponsored the event and donated the meal, which included two types of lasagna, salad and garlic bread. The restaurant also provided its famous root beer, Hibner said.

Nearly 20 pies were also donated by Perkins Restaurant and Hubbard Avenue Diner.

MHS orchestra students Michael Xie, Jahnavi Gali, Calvin Guse and Maureen Sheehan opened the 90-minute program with a performance that included two songs. They recently won MHS’s prestigous Concerto-Aria Competition. The MHS brass quintet, which included Kirby Heck, Kei Kohmoto, Katy Jurgella, Declan Mulkerin and Isaac Galang, also performed later in the program.

Five videos were shown. Four highlighted grants the Foundation has handed out since 2013, while the other showcased the bus tours that are held to announce the grant recipients. Three of the videos were produced by students in Bill Boehm’s video production class at MHS.

Northside principal Roz Craney spoke about the impact two grants worth $1,000 apiece for the school’s SPLASH advisory program have had on all students. Northside first-grade teacher Beth Bergman also shared how a nearly $900 grant that the Foundation awarded for her summer school program has impacted students.

“All of those stories and videos were very powerful,” Hibner said. “I think everyone who attended was moved to hear the impact the Foundation has made in just a short time.”

Hibner said the event was also an opportunity to thank and acknowledge all of the hard work the 14 board members do for the Foundation. He also publically thanked former board members along with those who served on the original steering committee that was created to determine the feasibility of a Foundation.

Board chair Courtney Ward-Reichard was the other emcee of the event. She recognized the sponsors and also appealed to attendees to give to the Foundation’s endowment fund, which is at $195,000 and is administered by MCF, and to support District transition programs, which is an area the Foundation has made a priority to support in 2015-16.

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Foundation Awards Over $8,300 in Inspiration Grants

The MCPASD Education Foundation awarded 10 teacher inspiration grants at five schools as part of its third fall bus tour on Wednesday, Dec. 2, with a value of more than $8,300.

Staff members to receive grants included West Middleton’s Julie Tofte and Lindsey Hellenbrand; Sauk Trail’s Andrea Lindberg and Ann O’Rourke; Northside’s Raelynn Bodell, Ami Schmidt and Tracy Hellenbrand, and the third-grade teaching team; Clark Street Community School’s Jason Pertzborn; and Middleton High School’s Kevin Bavery, Steve Kurr, and Jacquelyn Curran and Melissa Burgos.

The grants included a $1,250 grant funded by the State Bank of Cross Plains that focuses on financial literacy. In addition, Monsanto donated $750 that was used as part of the general grant fund.

The Foundation has awarded more than 50 grants totaling approximately $36,000 since it begin issuing grants in 2013. Every District school has received multiple grants.

Since its inception in 2011, the Foundation has also raised nearly $200,000 for its endowment fund though Madison Community Foundation. If you would like to contribute to the Foundation’s endowment fund, please visit the Foundation’s website. If you would like to sponsor a grant in 2016, please e-mail Foundation executive director Perry Hibner or call him at 829-9014

To see photos from the event, please visit the District’s Facebook page.

The nearly 2-hour yellow bus tour included stops at all of the schools. MHS band members played “On Wisconsin” in each of the schools before Hibner presented each recipient with flowers donated by Copps and a certificate.

“Our bus tours to announce our teacher grants is always an amazing experience, and this year was no exception,” Hibner said. “It is always one of the highlights of the year. To see the looks on the students’ and staff’s faces when we arrive is priceless.

“We are thrilled to be able to help our wonderful teachers to transform their innovative and creative ideas into real-life ‘inspiring experiences’ for our students with a grant from the Foundation.”

Other Foundation board members who attended part or all of the celebration included Superintendent Don Johnson, chair Courtney Ward-Reichard, vice chair Rick Sanders and treasurer Steph Mueller.

The Foundation received a record 26 grant applications this fall. The 10 grants ties for the most the Foundation has awarded. Hibner also noted it is the first time every grant was funded fully during a cycle.

Tofte received $947 for a traveling library of books designed for students reading below grade level in grades 2-4.

“I am thrilled to have received this generous grant,” she said. “The money will be used to stock a traveling library filled with quality books for teachers to be able to check out for specific units in our curriculum that match all readers. Thanks for making this possible.”

Hellenbrand received $500 to purchase supplies to assemble “break boxes” for each classroom in the school. The boxes will contain sensory items to help students renew concentration, calm down or re-energize for better learning results.

Lindberg and O’Rourke were awarded $452 to support an after-school book club for third-graders.

Bodell was awarded $1,000 to purchase a bass xylophone and metallophone. These larger instruments allow students who are struggling with the coordination of playing a stringed or keyboard instrument the opportunity to be a successful part of the music making.

Schmidt and Hellenbrand are the leaders of Northside SPLASH committee and received $500 to purchase supplies for the advisory program, which was implemented last year. It is the second consecutive year the Foundation has provided support for the program.

The Northside third-grade team received $500 to purchase books aimed at students reading signifcantly below grade level.

Pertzborn was awarded $1,250 from the State Bank of Cross Plains to support a trip to New York City, where 17 students will participate in financial seminars to study the stock market and investments. It is the third straight year Pertzborn has been awarded a grant from the Foundation.

Bavery and the MHS physical education department received $2,000 to allow students of limited economic means to participate in off-campus field trips to ice rinks, golf course and bowling alleys.

Kurr was awarded $325 to support a performance of Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima by composer Krzyszstof Penderecki at a recent MHS symphony orchestra concert. The students met with veterans and shared with they learned from this moving work in panel discussions.

“The Threnody for Victims of Hiroshima was an integral part of an unusual educational unit in orchestra  that included cross-disciplinary learning and community contact. It was a major part of a powerfully emotional concert program as well,” Kurr said. “The generous grant from the Education Foundation helped provide a unique learning experience for our students.”

Burgos and Curan were awarded $1,000 to support a trip fo 16 students to Panama in 2016 to learn about rainforest ecology. The curriculum will focus on conservation, scientific practices, service to the community and science applications in a real-world setting.

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Another Environmental Education Center Grant!

The Education Foundation received a $1,000 grant from the the Middleton Endowment for kits and equipment at the Pheasant Branch Environmental Education Center at Kromrey.

The award was one of four announced at the Middleton Chamber of Commerce’s monthly Get Moving Middleton breakfast meeting at the Hilton Garden Inn on Thursday, Dec. 3. Board members Tom Kobinsky and Rick Sanders attended on behalf of the Foundation.

It is the fourth grant totaling $13,000 the Foundation has received for the Center. The Foundation a $10,000 grant from the American Girl Fund for Children in late October. The Foundation also was awarded two $1,000 grants, from Madison4Kids in mid-September, and from the National Resources Foundation of Wisconsin C.D. Besadny Conservation Grant Program in early October.

“This is more great  news for our students and we are extremely grateful for the financial support from Middleton Endowment,” said Foundation executive director Perry Hibner, who was also on hand for Thursday’s announcement. “We have made it a priority to find funding for the Center this year and the $13,000 will go a long ways to ensuring that every student in the District will be able to visit the Conservancy this year and learn more about environmental education.”

Middleton Endowment also awarded grants to the Dean Foundation for Health, the Friends of the Performing Arts Center, and REACH-A-Child as part of its fall cycle.

REACH-A-Child received a $950 grant to purchase a computer for an intern. Their mission is to collect and provide books and drawstring backpacks to help first responders comfort children in times of crisis.

The Friends of the PAC received a $650 grant to cover the costs associated with a musical production of “Rumpelstiltskin” in January 2016 by the Missoula Children’s Theater. The residency week includes 15-20 school workshops and two performances.

The Dean Foundation received a $500 grant for its Benevolent Specialists Project Free Clinic, the only one in the area dedicated to providing quality health scare by volunteer professionals to those without insurance or underinsured.

“We were once again delighted with the number and quality of grants reviewed,’’ MCE chair Dan Loichinger said. “We want to thank our generous donors for their support. It’s only through their efforts that we can continue to fund quality projects. And we hope more in our community will consider giving so we can provide more grants to deserving organizations.”

The ME Advisory Committee also voted at its November meeting to award a scholarship to a graduating senior in the District starting in 2016. The amount will likely be between $500 and $1,000. The scholarship will be named after Andy Lewis, who has served on the advisory committee since Middleton Endowment’s inception in 2009.

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Foundation receives three more grants

The MCPASD Education Foundation learned on Monday, Oct. 26 that it had received a $10,000 grant from the American Girl Fund for Children to purchase kits and equipment for the Pheasant Branch Environmental Education Center located at Kromrey.

The Foundation also recently received two $1,000 grants for the Center. The Foundation learned in mid-September that it had received $1,000 from Madison4Kids. The Foundation also found out on Oct. 8 that it had received $1,000 from the National Resources Foundation of Wisconsin C.D. Besadny Conservation Grant Program.

The Foundation has also submitted grant applications for the Environmental Education Center with Captain Planet Foundation, Clif Bar, and the Meemic Foundation. The grants are worth more than $20,000. The Foundation should know by the end of October about the status of the four grant applications.

“The Foundation has made it a priority to find funding for the Pheasant Branch Environmental Education Center this year,” executive director Perry Hibner said. “It is our hope that we will be able to provide enough funds so that every student in the District will be able to visit the Conservancy this year and learn more about environmental education.”

The American Girl Fund for Children is a component fund of Madison Community Foundation, advised by executives of American Girl, LLC, a subsidiary of Mattel, Inc.  The Fund supports innovative programming for children ages 0-18 in Dane County. Check out other grants awarded by the fund in 2015.

“The Fund believes in creating a community in which all children learn to regard art forms and the environment as an integral part of everyday life and learning. Your project fulfills this mission,” Fund for Children board chair Renee Anderson said.

Madison4Kids is an area non-profit organization committed to making charitable  investments in communities and children in the Madison area.  The money comes from local individuals and businesses, along with a number of fundraising events.

“It is our way of giving back and making a difference in our local community,” said Deb Uschan, who is on the grant review committee. “We are happy to be able to help you.”

The Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin awarded $27,311 to 28 applicants through a 2015 C.D. Besadny conservation grant. The C.D. Besadny Conservation Grant Program awards grants to projects that involve the management and restoration of Wisconsin’s natural resources and/or focus on natural resources education and outreach.

“This year we received many impressive applications, which will support on-the-ground conservation work, as well as projects that get people and communities outside and engaged in nature,” said Caitlin Williamson, Foundation program and development coordinator. “We’re so proud to be able to support our partner organizations through this grassroots approach.”

Williams and treasurer visited Kromrey on Oct. 27 and presented the check to Foundation board chair Courtney Ward-Reichard along with Kromrey principal Steve Soeteber and associate principal Bill Deno.

Other projects in Dane County to receive grants included:

  • Anderson Park Friends, Invasive Species Removal Project
  • Clean Lakes Alliance, Rake for the Lake: Urban Leaf Management Initiative
  • Friends of Lake Wingra, Lake Wingra Watershed Management KickoffMadison Audubon Society, Connecting Students with Neighborhood Nature
  • Madison Parks Foundation, Sunday Bird and Nature Walk ProgramSouthern Wisconsin Chapter of Trout Unlimited, SWTU Stream Keepers Project, Kittleson Creek

The C.D. Besadny Conservation Grant Program supports projects in Wisconsin that promote the responsible stewardship of Wisconsin’s natural resources at the local level. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the program, which has now awarded $446,819 to more than 569 organizations in every county in Wisconsin since its inception in 1990.

The program is named after former Department of Natural Resources Secretary and Foundation founder C.D. “Buzz” Besadny.

 

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Foundation Receives Pheasant Branch Environmental Education Center Grants

The MCPASD Education Foundation recently received two $1,000 grants to be used to purchase kits and equipment for the Pheasant Branch Environmental Education Center located at Kromrey.

The Foundation learned in mid-September that it had received $1,000 from Madison4Kids. The Foundation also found out on Oct. 8 that it had received $1,000 from the National Resources Foundation of Wisconsin C.D. Besadny Conservation Grant Program.

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The Foundation has also submitted grant applications for the Environmental Education Center with American Girl Fund for Children, Captain Planet Foundation, Clif Bar, and the Meemic Foundation. The grants are worth more than $20,000. The Foundation should know by the end of October about the status of the four grant applications.

“The Foundation has made it a priority to find funding for the Pheasant Branch Environmental Education Center this year,” executive director Perry Hibner said. “It is our hope that we will be able to provide enough funds so that every student in the District will be able to visit the Conservancy this year and learn more about environmental education.”

Madison4Kids is an area non-profit organization committed to making charitable  investments in communities and children in the Madison area.  The money comes from local individuals and businesses, along with a number of fundraising events.

“It is our way of giving back and making a difference in our local community,” said Deb Uschan, who is on the grant review committee. “We are happy to be able to help you.”

The Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin awarded $27,311 to 28 applicants through a 2015 C.D. Besadny conservation grant. The C.D. Besadny Conservation Grant Program awards grants to projects that involve the management and restoration of Wisconsin’s natural resources and/or focus on natural resources education and outreach.

“This year we received many impressive applications, which will support on-the-ground conservation work, as well as projects that get people and communities outside and engaged in nature,” said Caitlin Williamson, Foundation program and development coordinator. “We’re so proud to be able to support our partner organizations through this grassroots approach.”

Other projects in Dane County to receive grants included:

  • Anderson Park Friends, Invasive Species Removal Project
  • Clean Lakes Alliance, Rake for the Lake: Urban Leaf Management Initiative
  • Friends of Lake Wingra, Lake Wingra Watershed Management KickoffMadison Audubon Society, Connecting Students with Neighborhood Nature
  • Madison Parks Foundation, Sunday Bird and Nature Walk ProgramSouthern Wisconsin Chapter of Trout Unlimited, SWTU Stream Keepers Project, Kittleson Creek

The C.D. Besadny Conservation Grant Program supports projects in Wisconsin that promote the responsible stewardship of Wisconsin’s natural resources at the local level. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the program, which has now awarded $446,819 to more than 569 organizations in every county in Wisconsin since its inception in 1990.

The program is named after former Department of Natural Resources Secretary and Foundation founder C.D. “Buzz” Besadny.

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Foundation Updates Board of Education on Alumni Network and Hall of Fame

Education Foundation board chair Courtney Ward-Reichard and executive director Perry Hibner updated the Board of Education at its regular meeting on Monday, Sept. 28 on the recently formed Cardinal Alumni Network and a proposal to develop a Hall of Fame to honor distinguished alumni.

Ward-Reichard said a Facebook page and website have been established for the Cardinal Alumni Network. She reported the social media page had received nearly 200 likes in the first couple of weeks.

The Foundation plans to use the network as a way to keep alumni informed about what is happening in the District and also to connect alumni with one another. The website is set up so alumni can post reunion information and class notes and also as a way to individuals to provide contact information to the Foundation.

The Foundation hopes to send out 1-4 newsletters annually to members of the Cardinal Alumni Network, she said.

She noted the Cardinal Alumni Network will hold a Homecoming Celebration on Friday night before the MHS-Madison West football game at Breitenbach Stadium. The 1-hour event begins at 5:45 p.m. and includes photo opportunities with the Cardinal mascot and a performance by the Kromrey band. Temporary Cardinal tattoos will also be available along with free refreshments.

Anyone who signs up for the Cardinal Alumni Network will also receive a free lanyard.

Ward-Reichard also shared information about the makeup of a Hall of Fame. She covered possible members of the selection committee, along with operating guidelines and selection criteria.

Inductees must have demonstrated high levels of achievement in post-high school endeavors, outstanding citizenship or leadership or meritorious contributions to society. Inductees must be at least 28 years old and need not have graduated from a high school in the District but must have attended a District school for at least four semesters.

Hibner has already met with MHS athletic director Bob Joers, who had done some research on a Hall of Fame for athletics. The Foundation’s Hall of Fame would be open to all, including athletes.

“We believe the inductees of the Cardinal Hall of Fame will inspire the current students of the District to pursue excellence in their lives and careers,” she said.

Hibner also reported the Foundation received a $1,000 grant from Madison 4 Kids for the Pheasant Branch Environmental Education Center, which is housed at Kromrey and open to all District students. He expects an official announcement for another grant for $1,000 from a local organization early next week.

The Foundation also had multiple grant applications out with other local, regional and national organizations worth approximately $23,000, he said. All of the funds are earmarked for the Environmental Education Center, he said.

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Fall 2015 Grant Application Released

The Foundation has released the Fall 2015 application for its Inspiration Grants.  Applications are due by October 15, 2015. The application is available through the links below.

If you have questions, about writing a successful grant application, please contact Perry Hibner.

Fall 2015 Grant Application – .pdf

Fall 2015 Grant Application – Word

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Foundation Launches Cardinal Alumni Network

The MCPASD Education Foundation is proud to announce the launch of the Cardinal Alumni Network, an organization devoted to helping alumni of Middleton High School connect with one another and our schools.  The Network will serve as a resource for reunion planning and as a way to connect with what’s happening in our school district, including with a quarterly newsletter that will include class notes and news.

The website for the Cardinal Alumni Network is www.cardinalalumninetwork.org.  Alumni can provide contact information for reunions, sign up for the newsletter and learn more about the history of the District.  Please also look for and like the Cardinal Alumni Network on Facebook (www.facebook.com/cardinalalumni) and follow the Network on Twitter at www.twitter.com/cardinalalummhs.

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Band Scholarships to Honor Brad Schneider

Brad Schneider, one of the MHS band directors, has retired after 38 years of teaching, 29 of which were spent in our District.

As the time for his retirement approached, Schneider made it clear that the end of the year was “all about the kids,” and NOT about his retirement. However, Ashley said many band parents and students also wanted to find a way to honor him, too.

In keeping with his theme of “it’s all about the kids,” the MHS Band and Orchestra Parent Association (BOPA) has established a fund that will serve as a legacy for Schneider and will be used for the purposes of providing students with music opportunities into the future through the award of band scholarships.

MCPASD band parents have been extremely fortunate that their students could learn under Brad’s experience and leadership and benefit from his passion for music, said Annette Ashley, who also serves on the Board of Education.

“We will forever be grateful to Mr. Schneider for his dedication in giving over 2,000 students the best musical opportunities possible,” she said.

Many of Schneider’s students have participated in the “super secret” band, accompanying the MCPASD Education Foundation on its bi-annual bus tour to award inspiration grants. Foundation board chair Courtney Ward-Reichard said “we are so grateful to Brad for embracing the idea of the super secret band; having these talented students play in classrooms throughout our district adds tremendous excitement to the grant announcements, and has surely inspired many students to keep pursuing music.”

Donations to the scholarship fund are tax-deductible, and may be made through the Paypal link below.

You can also send checks to Perry Hibner, Education Foundation Executive Director, 7106 South Ave., Middleton, WI 53562. The check should be made out to the MCPASD Education Foundation, but please note that the check is for the Schneider Band Scholarship Fund in the memo line.

 

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Foundation Awards First College Scholarship to Dana Angeli Rodriguez

Dana Angeli Rodriguez received the inaugural MCPASD Education Foundation Scholarship during the annual Scholarship Night at the Performing Arts Center on Wednesday, May 20.

Foundation executive director Perry Hibner presented Rodriguez with a $500 scholarship.

“I am so honored and grateful to receive this award,’’ she said. “It is very nice to be recognized for my hard work. The scholarship has certainly inspired me, and will motivate me to continue to work hard in college.’’

Rodriguez plans to attend UW-La Crosse and major in psychology and would like to have a career in medicine.

Rodriguez served as the Student Council vice president this past year at Middleton High School. She has also participated in Key Club, Link Crew, Drama Club and Family Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA). She has also volunteered for the Middleton Recreation Department and children’s liturgy.

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A committee of MHS staff members selected Rodriguez based on criteria provided by the Foundation’s board of directors.

“We were particularly impressed with the number of clubs Dana has participated in, along with the many volunteer hours she has completed,” Hibner said.

She said her favorite part of high school at MHS was helping with the Student Council’s annual blood drive.

“It definitely made my day to know that I was helping save lives,’’ she said.

Rodriguez was grateful for the support she has received from her parents and two brothers.

“I have learned that while shortcuts in life are tempting, the long road I have taken to accomplish my goals has been worth it,’’ she said.

The Education Foundation was formed in 2011 to provide inspiring experiences for District students and staff. The Foundation has raised more than $150,000 for its endowment fund through Madison Community Foundation and provided another $50,000 in grants and other donations to the District. Another $200,000 has already been pledged over the next three years or raised through events.

The Foundation has awarded 41 grants totaling more than $27,000 since 2013. Every school in the District has received at least two grants.

Foundation Board Chair Courtney Ward-Reichard said “we are thrilled to award our first scholarship, and also pleased that Ms. Rodriguez is the first recipient. We wish her well as she continues her education.”

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Foundation Awards Inspiration Grants in Spring Bus Tour

The MCPASD Education Foundation awarded nine grants to seven District schools as part of its fifth bus tour on Monday, May 18.

Staff members to receive grants included Clark Street Community School’s Bryn Orum and Monique Hicks and Sauk Trail’s Kari Nonn, Jacki Greene and Chris Dahlk. In addition, each elementary school received a $500 grant for their Battle of the Books programs.

The total grants totaled $6,300, including a $500 grant sponsored by Galin Education and a $400 grant sponsored by The UPS Store of Middleton. It is the second consecutive year UPS Store owner Keith Johnston has sponsored a grant.

The Foundation has handed out more than $27,000 since it began issuing grants in 2013. Since its inception in 2011, the Foundation has also raised more than $150,000 for its endowment fund though Madison Community Foundation and has pledges and campaign contributions of another $150,000 for the next three years.

“It is such a thrill to be able to distribute funds so generously contributed by our donors to some of our many amazing teachers for inspiring and exciting programs for students throughout our school district,” Foundation board chair Courtney Ward-Reichard said. “I am so looking forward to seeing the results of these many diverse initiatives.”

The 2-hour yellow bus tour included stops at all of the schools. Nearly 20 MHS band members played “On Wisconsin” and another song in each of the schools before Ward-Reichard presented each recipient with flowers donated by Copps and a certificate.

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Other Foundation board members who attended part or all of the celebration included Superintendent Don Johnson, Shawna Bertalot, Bill Reis, Brenda Delabarre, Tom Kobinsky, Mathiam Mbow, Stephanie Moen-Mueller, Rick Sanders and Melodee Vogt.

Hicks received a $1,000 grant to support visits to area colleges and universities by members of the CSCS post-secondary preparation group. The Foundation liked that the program will engage students who might not otherwise have the ability to visit colleges. About one-third of all CSCS graduates currently attend a post-secondary institution. The grant was partially funded by Galin Education.

Nonn, Green and Dahlk received a $2,000 grant to convert Sauk Trail’s exiting, but underutilized, garden into a Monarch Garden. The Foundation was particularly impressed with how the school plans to incorporate the curriculum across all grades and subject areas.

“We are thrilled to be able to bring this dream to life and into the lives of our students,” Nonn said. “We are currently making arrangements to put our plan into action.  Orders are being placed and a ‘planting party’ has been scheduled.

“The Education Foundation has given us the opportunity to do something outside the box and do it well. We dreamt about students spending time planting, caring for, observing, and interacting with nature. Now that is a reality.”

It is the largest grant the Foundation has awarded since it started its inspiration grants for staff in the spring of 2013.

Orum and student John Horner received a $300 grant to purchase two portable basketball hoops, basketballs and storage equipment for CSCS and Middleton Youth Center students. Horner will also survey students to find out the impact the Basketball Club has on behavior and morale at the charter school. It is the first grant written by a student to be funded by the Foundation.

Each elementary school received a $500 grant to support the Battle of the Books reading program, which is designed to encourage third- and fourth-grade students to read great books and have fun while competing with peers. Students read 3-4 books from a list of 10 books, then come together in groups of 3-4 to demonstrate their abilities and test their knowledge of the books they have read. The grant was partially funded by The UPS Store of Middleton.

“Imagine our surprise when in struts the MHS marching band, my smiling principal, the superintendent and others to present us with a $500 grant to be used for Battle of the Books,” Sauk Trail fourth-grade teacher Wendy Coyne said. “We will use the money to purchase novels for this exciting reading comprehension competition.  Thank you, Education Foundation.”

Foundation executive director Perry Hibner said Mary Jo Nelson wrote a grant proposal for Park and Sunset Ridge, while Diane Boles wrote one for Elm Lawn and West Middleton. The Foundation grant committee was so impressed with the program that they decided to provide funds for all six elementary schools, he said.

“I’m thrilled that all of our elementary schools received a grant,” Boles said. “I wanted to ensure that all learners from every income level would have the opportunity to read great works of children’s literature and to be inspired to read these works by participating in a team competition.

“Though I believe that children should be encouraged to read whatever books they enjoy, I also believe that life-long learners benefit from sharing a common literary background.  The Battle of the Books is one way for students to build a foundation for a quality literary education.”

It is the second grant Boles has received from the Foundation. Last fall, she and custodian Nicholas Smith received $1,500 for materials to help create a sustainable cycle of composting, gardening and nutrition at West Middleton.

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Phase II Brick Campaign Underway

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The MCPASD Education Foundation announced today that there will be a second phase to its popular Bricks to Build a Strong Foundation campaign.

Phase II will begin on Wednesday, April 1 and will end on June 15, Foundation executive director Perry Hibner said.

The Foundation sold more than 225 bricks, that fill more than 400-plus spaces, as part of the first phase of the campaign, which ended on Oct. 15. The bricks sold to date are expected to be installed at Glacier Creek and Kromrey middle schools over spring break.

Officials with J.H. Findorff & Son, the construction firm for both middle school building projects, agreed to another phase while they complete the final areas at Kromrey.

“This is a wonderful opportunity to allow more businesses and individuals to create a legacy at one of our schools,’’ Foundation Board Chair Courtney Ward-Reichard said. “This fundraising project allows individuals and businesses to show their support of students in our District in a very tangible way. The funds raised will continue to be used to provide even more inspiring experiences to children in our schools.’’

Engraved bricks are available in three sizes and cost $100, $200 or $400. The paving for the second phase is expected to be completed in mid-August, Hibner said. The District plans to hold a dedication ceremony at Glacier Creek on Sept. 9 and at Kromrey on Sept. 16.

The bricks take up one, two or four spaces depending on the size, Hibner said. There are approximately 500 spaces left at Kromrey and only 150 spaces left at Glacier Creek. Bricks that aren’t purchased and engraved as part of the second phase will remain blank, Hibner said, meaning that this is the last opportunity to purchase bricks.

An order form is available below. Online payments are possible through PayPal, but an order form is required for all purchases. If you would like more information or have additional questions, please call Hibner at 608-829-9014.

The Foundation has already raised more than $150,000 for its endowment fund and already has close to $150,000 in pledges over the next three years. The Foundation has awarded 32 grants worth nearly $20,000 since 2013. Every District school, along with one 4K site, has received at least one grant. Grant recipients for the spring will be announced in late April or early May.

Foundation board members will also be at a number of events at Glacier Creek and Kromrey for the remainder of the school year to answer questions.

“We are thrilled that we are able to offer people a second chance to participate in this campaign,’’ Hibner said. “My family purchased two bricks as a way to say thank you to the District but also as a way to honor our children and the education they received here. We can’t wait to see those bricks installed.’’

hibner brick

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Classroom Sign Honors Northside’s Betsy Delzer

An anonymous donor has generously sponsored a room at Northside in honor of art teacher Betsy Delzer.  The sign is part of the Foundation’s donor recognition program, which offers signs on various facilities throughout our schools.

Delzer chose the quote for the sign, which will remain in place outside her classroom for at least 10 years.

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Delzer chose the quote for the sign, which will remain in place outside her classroom for at least 10 years.

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Northside Principal Roz Craney and Foundation Board Member Shawna Bertalot and her daughter Genna helped celebrate the installation of the sign during a ceremony in January 2015.

To find out more about sponsoring a room in a District school, contact Foundation Executive Director Perry Hibner.

 

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Teacher Inspiration Grant Awards Top $7500

The MCPASD Education Foundation awarded an inspiration grant to ten teachers at seven schools and the Middleton Youth Center as part of its bus tour on Tuesday, Nov. 25, 2014.

Staff members to receive grants included Clark Street Community School’s Jason Pertzborn, Elm Lawn’s Casey Harrod and John Becker, Glacier Creek’s Pamela Anderson and Emily Hutchison, Middleton High School’s Caitlin Farrell and Tamara Weisbrod, Northside’s Sara Whirry, Sauk Trail’s Paige Bessick and Stephanie Spence and West Middleton’s Diane Boles and Nicholas Smith. In addition, Gabrielle Hinahara, the director of the Youth Center, also received a grant.

“It is a great thing that the Foundation is doing, and it is so much fun to being involved and see the joy in the recipient’s faces,” said Dan Geocaris, who drove the grant tour’s bus both times in 2014.

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To see more than 70 photos from the Foundation’s grant bus tour, please visit the District’s Facebook page.

The Foundation handed out $7,335 as part of its fall cycle. That total included a $1,250 grant sponsored by the State Bank of Cross Plains, a $750 grant sponsored by Monsanto and a $250 grant sponsored by an anonymous donor. It is the second consecutive year State Bank of Cross Plains and Monsanto have sponsored grants.

The Foundation has handed out nearly $20,000 since it began issuing grants in 2013. Since its inception in 2011, the Foundation has also raised more than $150,000 for its endowment fund though Madison Community Foundation.

“It is such a thrill to be able to distribute funds so generously contributed by our donors to some of our many amazing teachers for inspiring and exciting programs for students throughout our school district,” Foundation board chair Courtney Ward-Reichard said. “I am so looking forward to seeing the results of these many diverse initiatives.”

If you would like to contribute to the Foundation’s endowment fund, please visit the MCF website. If you would like to sponsor a grant during the spring 2015 cycle, please e-mail Foundation executive director Perry Hibner or call him at 829-9014

The 2-hour, 30-minute yellow bus tour included stops at all of the schools. More than 20 MHS band members played “On Wisconsin” and another song in each of the schools before Ward-Reichard presented each recipient with flowers donated by Copps and a certificate.

“This was the band’s best performance yet,” said Stephanie Moen-Mueller, a Foundation board member who helps coordinate the band participants. “Such a good thing, giving away money — but the band is what makes it fun!”

Other Foundation board members who attended part or all of the celebration included Superintendent Don Johnson, Ellen Lindgren and Jeff Roepsch. Middleton Chamber of Commerce executive director Van Nutt also attended for part of the day.

Pertzborn received a $1,250 grant to help students learn how to write resumes and cover letters, apply for jobs, interview for positions, receive paychecks, learn about W-2 and W-4 forms and prepare personal budgets. It is the second grant he has received from the Foundation. This grant was funded by the State Bank of Cross Plains.

“I am very thankful for the State Bank of Cross Plains for their generous support of students in the Middleton-Cross Plains School District and especially here at Clark Street Community School,” Pertzborn said. “These grants are very helpful and allow us to create and enhance wonderful learning opportunities for the students here at CSCS in job preparation and personal finance.”

Harrod, a first-grade teacher, received a $300 grant to purchase books for below benchmark students with the goal of helping the readers reach Level H or higher by the end of the school year.

Becker received a $600 grant to hire experienced professional musicians to work all day with students in the spring. Students will learn about musical, cultural and dance traditions in jazz with strong African, Caribbean and South American influences, culminating in an all-school concert. This is the second grant he has received from the Foundation.

“I am very excited to get going on this project and all of our Elm Lawn students will benefit in a powerful way,” he said.  Thanks, too, for the surprise of it and for the high school band sharing their music throughout our school. I heard all day from the students about the band playing and marching through school. They really enjoyed that, and it was great send-off to the Thanksgiving weekend.”

Anderson received $350 to provide opportunities for Glacier Creek’s recently formed Gay-Straight Alliance Club. She plans to use the funds to provide financial support for students of need who wish to attend workshops or activities, along with supplies the club may need.

Hutchison received $775 to purchase canvas and acrylic paint and hire artist Michael Owens to work with students over two days as they develop murals with a simple, inspiring word. The paintings will be displayed at Glacier Creek and around the District.

“As strong as all of the applications were, the Foundation’s grant committee was very impressed with the quality of the Baltimore Love Mural Project,” executive director Perry Hibner said.

Farrell and Weisbrod received $310 to pay for postage for postcards that are sent  home to families of MHS students who are displaying positive behaviors in the classroom and community. It is the second grant the Foundation has given to the MHS PBIS program.

Whirry received $1,000 to purchase supplies for the school’s SPLASH student advisory program. Activities are held monthly in small groups and involve every student and staff member. Principal Roz Craney said this has created a strong community of learning and encouraged students to be role models.

“The excitement this program has generated has been fantastic,” Hibner said. “I’ve heard from many Northside parents who say their children talk about this more than anything else.”

Bessick and Spence received $250 to create a mural at the school with flags on a map representing the diverse population of students and staff at Sauk Trail. Two classroom discussions will also be created for all teachers to use in discussions about the mural.

Boles and Smith received $1,500 for materials to help create a sustainable cycle of composting, gardening and nutrition at West Middleton. Monsanto provided $750 for this grant.

Hinahara received $1,000 to purchase eight digital cameras for an after-school Photography Club that will give students the opportunity to learn about and practice photography. The Youth Center meets every day for 2 hours after school at Clark Street Community School and is open to all middle school students in the District.

In all, the grants should impact nearly 4,000 students across the District, Hibner said.

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Foundation Awards Nearly $7,500 in Innovation Grants

The MCPASD Education Foundation awarded 10 grants to seven schools and the Middleton Youth Center on Tuesday, November 25 during its semi-annual bus tour.

Staff members receiving grants included Clark Street Community School’s Jason Pertzborn, Elm Lawn’s Casey Harrod and John Becker, Glacier Creek’s Pamela Anderson and Emily Hutchison, Middleton High School’s Caitlin Farrell and Tamara Weisbrod, Northside’s Sara Whirry, Sauk Trail’s Paige Bessick and Stephanie Spence and West Middleton’s Diane Boles and Nicholas Smith. In addition, Gabrielle Hinahara, the director of the Youth Center, also received a grant.

“It is a great thing that the Foundation is doing, and it is so much fun to being involved and see the joy in the recipient’s faces,” said Dan Geocaris, who drove the grant tour’s bus twice in 2014.

The Foundation awarded $7,335 as part of its fall cycle. That total included a $1,250 grant sponsored by the State Bank of Cross Plains, a $750 grant sponsored by Monsanto and a $250 grant sponsored by an anonymous donor. It is the second consecutive year State Bank of Cross Plains and Monsanto have sponsored grants.

The Foundation has distributed nearly $20,000 since it begin issuing grants in 2013. Since its inception in 2011, the Foundation has also raised more than $150,000 for its endowment fund though Madison Community Foundation.

“It is such a thrill to be able to distribute funds so generously contributed by our donors to some of our many amazing teachers for inspiring and exciting programs for students throughout our school district,” Foundation board chair Courtney Ward-Reichard said. “I am so looking forward to seeing the results of these many diverse initiatives.”

If you would like to contribute to the Foundation’s endowment fund, please visit the MCF website. If you would like to sponsor a grant during the Spring 2015 cycle, please e-mail Foundation executive director Perry Hibner or call him at 829-9014

The 2-hour, 30-minute yellow bus tour included stops at all of the schools. More than 20 MHS band members played “On Wisconsin” and another song in each of the schools before Ward-Reichard presented each recipient with flowers donated by Copps and a certificate.

“This was the band’s best performance yet,” said Stephanie Moen-Mueller, a Foundation board member who helps coordinate the band participants. “Such a good thing, giving away money — but the band is what makes it fun!”

Other Foundation board members who attended part or all of the celebration included Superintendent Don Johnson, Ellen Lindgren and Jeff Roepsch. Middleton Chamber of Commerce executive director Van Nutt also attended for part of the day.

Pertzborn received a $1,250 grant to help students learn how to write resumes and cover letters, apply for jobs, interview for positions, receive paychecks, learn about W-2 and W-4 forms and prepare personal budgets. It is the second grant he has received from the Foundation. This grant was funded by the State Bank of Cross Plains.

Harrod, a first-grade teacher, received a $300 grant to purchase books for below benchmark students with the goal of helping the readers reach Level H or higher by the end of the school year.

Becker received a $600 grant to hire experienced professional musicians to work all day with students in the spring. Students will learn about musical, cultural and dance traditions in jazz with strong African, Caribbean and South American influences, culminating in an all-school concert. This is the second grant he has received from the Foundation.

“I am very excited to get going on this project and all of our Elm Lawn students will benefit in a powerful way,” he said.  “Thanks, too, for the surprise of it and for the high school band sharing their music throughout our school. I heard all day from the students about the band playing and marching through school. They really enjoyed that, and it was great send-off to the Thanksgiving weekend.”

Anderson received $350 to provide opportunities for Glacier Creek’s recently formed Gay-Straight Alliance Club. She plans to use the funds to provide financial support for students of need who wish to attend workshops or activities, along with supplies the club may need.

Hutchison received $775 to purchase canvas and acrylic paint and hire artist Michael Owens to work with students over two days as they develop murals with a simple, inspiring word. The paintings will be displayed at Glacier Creek and around the District.

“As strong as all of the applications were, the Foundation’s grant committee was very impressed with the quality of the Baltimore Love Mural Project,” executive director Perry Hibner said.

Farrell and Weisbrod received $310 to pay for postage for postcards that are sent  home to families of MHS students who are displaying positive behaviors in the classroom and community. It is the second grant the Foundation has given to the MHS PBIS program.

Whirry received $1,000 to purchase supplies for the school’s SPLASH student advisory program. Activities are held monthly in small groups and involve every student and staff member. Principal Roz Craney said this has created a strong community of learning and encouraged students to be role models.

“The excitement this program has generated has been fantastic,” Hibner said. “I’ve heard from many Northside parents who say their children talk about this more than anything else.”

Bessick and Spence received $250 to create a mural at the school with flags on a map representing the diverse population of students and staff at Sauk Trail. Two classroom discussions will also be created for all teachers to use in discussions about the mural.

Boles and Smith received $1,500 for materials to help create a sustainable cycle of composting, gardening and nutrition at West Middleton. Monsanto provided $750 for this grant.

Hinahara received $1,000 to purchase eight digital cameras for an after-school Photography Club that will give students the opportunity to learn about and practice photography. The Youth Center meets every day for 2 hours after school at Clark Street Community School and is open to all middle school students in the District.

In all, the grants should impact nearly 4,000 students across the District, Hibner said.

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Brick Campaign Success!

The MCPASD Education Foundation sold more than 225 bricks as part of its Bricks to Build a Strong Foundation campaign that wrapped up October 15.

The campaign began in early August. After expenses, the Foundation expects to raise more than $30,000 from the brick campaign with the majority of the funds being earmarked for its endowment fund, which is held by the Madison Community Foundation. The Foundation has raised nearly $150,000 for its endowment fund since 2011. Earnings on the endowment are available in perpetuity to support students and staff.

The Foundation has awarded more than $20,000 in grants since 2013, including nearly $7,500 in grants this fall. All ten District schools, along with Pooh Bear Preschool, have been awarded at least one grant. The grants have impacted more than 4,000 District students.

The bricks are currently being engraved by Pechmann Memorials, and will be installed by J.H. Findorff & Son, the construction firm that has worked on both middle school building projects for the District. The bricks will be placed near the main entrances at both schools, and are expected to be installed in December.

Foundation executive director Perry Hibner was especially excited by the number of area businesses and organizations that decided to purchase bricks, including Children’s Dental Center, Communication Innovations, Cross Plains Optimist Club, Cross Plains Lions Club, Halverson Flooring Center, Harbor Athletic Club, H&H Electric, Hooper Construction, Hubbard Avenue Diner, J.H. Findorff & Son, Kalscheur Implement, Kicks Unlimited, Maly Roofing, Middleton Community Bank, Middleton Community Endowment, Middleton Education Association, Middleton Kiwanis Club, North American Mechanical, Plastic Ingenuity, Pooh Bear Childcare & Preschool, River Valley Bank, State Bank of Cross Plains, VFW Auxiliary Post 8216 and Willy Street Co-Op West.

“The brick campaign was a big success,’’ he said. “We are grateful to everyone who decided to participate.’’

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