Bossier City Optimist Club awards teachers nearly $25,000

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By Stacey Tinsley, stinsley@bossierpress.com

The Bossier City Optimist Club awarded local teachers nearly $25,000 Wednesday at a special Grant Awards luncheon ceremony at Ralph & Kacoo’s in Bossier City. 

The awards will fund 10 classroom projects for the 2019-20 school year.

“Bossier schools doesn’t have a better friend then the Optimist club,” said Mitch Downey, Superintendent of Bossier Schools. “This is an incredible partnership and we can’t say enough how thankful we are to y’all for everything that you do. We hope to continue to work closely with the Optimist club and continue this relationship for many, many more years.”

Last month, 49 Bossier Parish educators submitted grant proposals detailing various initiatives to support classroom learning and increase student engagement. A judging panel reviewed each application and conducted face-to-face teacher interviews before deciding which projects to fund.

Here is a list of the 2019 Bossier Optimist Club Grant Recipients and  their Proposals:

  • Brandi Dye – Cope Middle – $3,000: Bowling for Life supports the funding of physical education tools and materials to support a unit that will help enhance students in physical activity, social and emotional, mental-focus and motor skills.
  • Kara Stephenson- Elm Grove Middle – $2,730: The Google Expedition kit to support Google Goggles so students can experience learning through a virtual and/or augmented reality-based education that extends beyond the walls of the classrooms.
  • Christy Hopkins – Parkway High School – $2,995 :It’s All in the DNA! This project will support research equipment and lab equipment to enable students to learn about the latest discoveries in biotechnology and become an active CSI investigator in solving real world problems in science and technology.
  • Eric Clinton/Teresa Ramadan – Parkway High School – $3,000: This project will fund specialized seeds, materials and resources, and tools for students to participate with the hands-on approach to assessing resources needed to grow sustainable agriculture and explore the realms of producing economical and healthy produce foliage. Students will be able to control the environment and manipulate variables for assessment of cause and effect performance in relation to nutrient levels, moisture levels, and microbe activity.
  • Amanda Mineo – Parkway High School – $2,970: This project fund lab equipment and specialized kits to teach students important lab and research skills for future professions in medical, engineering, and laboratory fields. Students will apply scientific discovery skills and collect data to assess current science theories.
  • Vallette Weaver – Haughton High School – $2,926: This project would involve the purchase of chrome books to support credit recovery and EOC (End of Course) and the support of remediation through technology to gain credits to be college/career ready.
  • Vanessa Powers – Plantation Park Elementary – $1,580: Say Cheese is a project that will provide a creative outlet for students to learn aperture, lighting, and photo composition, as well as photo editing with editing software and the use of a professional photographer’s camera with lens.
  • Callie Schneider – Central Park Elementary – $2,456: The STEM Detectives MYSTERIES Project Kit will teach STEM skills as well as Motivate Younger Students to Explore, Research, Investigate, Evaluate, and Solve real-world problems in grades PreK-5th.
  • Jan Rogers – Bellaire Elementary – $2,997: The Mystery Science Project Kit provides a Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) aligned curriculum to four grade levels for three years. Lessons will cover a wide range of topics, including light and sound, biodiversity, engineering, and the water cycle to support learning across the curricula.

The Bossier City Optimist Club began awarding teacher grants to Bossier Schools in 1988. To date, the club has awarded $484,000.