GGEF awards 16 grants
totaling $19,161.06

The Greater Greer Education Foundation presented $19,161.06 in grant money to 16 school and community projects in Greenville and Spartanburg counties at a news conference Jan. 29 at Greer City Hall.

Brent Garrett, chairman of the Foundation, welcomed grant recipients and their guests,

“Since 2011, the Foundation has awarded grants and scholarships totaling more than $117,000,” Garrett said, “and we are happy that because of our sponsors and community support, we can award these grants to you today.”

Board member Margaret Burch, a former board chairman, told the group about a new initiative to raise money for grants and scholarship.

“This year, board member Nancy Welch and I got together to try to come up with a plan to raise more money for education,” she said. “After a lot of discussion, we decided on Greer Women Giving for Education.”

Invitations were sent to women asking them to be a part of the founding group. “And it worked,” Burch said.  “Greer Women Giving for Education has raised $17,000 for education.”

Thursday’s grants, made possible by Foundation’s sponsors and donors, ranged from $425 to $1,500.

The 2015 grants:

James F. Byrnes High School/Debbie Holcombe — $1,500.00
The grant will be used to continue the FIGHT weight loss/get fit program, which provides students with an opportunity to participate in a program that promotes a healthy active lifestyle through exercise, nutrition education and activities in a supportive environment.

Crestview Elementary School/Tracy Quinn — $1,500.00
The grant will be use to create a “Book Swap Mobile” for the school. The cart, filled with books, will travel throughout the school and allow students to trade in gently used books for books that are new to them.

Dunbar Child Development Center/ Mandi Presley — $1,500.00
The grant will be used at the 4K level to purchase 24 Big Books, themed children’s literature, materials that support phonemic awareness, alphabet knowledge and oral language.

Byrnes Freshman Academy/Robin Luttrell — $1,500.00
The grant will be used to purchase The Go! Link system and probes needed to perform experiments in science department labs to increase students’ lab skills, preparing them for real world jobs and the competitive job market.

Chandler Creek Elementary School/Leah Stafford — $1,500.00
The grant will be used to create an afterschool engineering club called “Engineering is Elementary. ” The class will explore the engineering design process through hands-on, real world situations.

Greer Chamber Leadership Class/continuing support — $1,500.00

Woodland Elementary School/Louise Gillespie — $1,452.00
The grant will be used to enhance the school’s reading program. Children’s books will be purchased that are on each student’s identified reading levels, introduced to the student at school and then taken home for sharing.

Chandler Creek Elementary School/Victoria Salvat — $1,448.00
The grant will be used to purchase iPads that will be used to motivate students in the third grade and support them as they learn how to read using technology. The iPads will allow students to hear how they read, listen to their pronunciations and strengthen their language.

Skyland Elementary School/Carol C. Godfrey — $1,423.00
The grant will be used in the school’s “Skyland Sings!” program to improve the quality of the choral music experience through new and developmentally appropriate choral music and to replace choral risers, improving the quality of student performances.

Greer High School/Kara Ponder — $1,268.82
The grant will be used to purchase iPads for resource students to help them work toward their high school diplomas. The students will have access to the iPads in the classroom rather than having to leave class to use library or lab computers.

Chandler Creek Elementary School/Leah Stafford — $1,058.94
The grant will be used to purchase a Hue HD camera, a small, flexible camera that hooks up directly to a computer and projects whatever is placed under the camera onto a promethean board, allowing a teacher to do everything from project a page from a textbook to complete the steps to a science experiment for the entire class to watch.

Skyland Elementary School/Patricia Smiley — $1,032.95
The grant will be used to purchase Earobics and the Auditory Memory Quick Stories software to help students with mild to moderate speech and language delays.

Greer High School/Jamie Garrett — $845.88
The grant will be used to expand the school’s Teacher Cadets program, which encourages academically talented, high-achieving high school students to consider teaching as a career.

Skyland Elementary School/Angie Bryant — $750.00
The grant will be used to support the school’s “Shining Stars Arts Night” program. Students will learn about the art movement known as Pop Art, complete a 2-dimensional artwork and a 3-dimensional artwork, which will be featured at “Shining Stars.”

Tigerville Elementary School/C. Diane Jackson — $456.00
The grant will be used to purchase the “First in Math” program, an online program, which will be used to help improve students’ math scores.

Mountain View Elementary School/Jody Dill — $425.00
The grant will be used to purchase the HearBuilder program, a systematic evidence-based learning program for PreK to eighth-grade students. The program is for special needs students to be specifically taught language arts and reading readiness skills in a visual way that uses the left and right brain.

The Foundation serves 27 schools in Greenville and Spartanburg counties.

2014 Foundation Corporate Sponsors are: BMW, Pelham Medical Center, Greer Memorial Hospital, Greenville-Spartanburg Airport, Hanson Aggregates and Greer Women Giving for Education.
2014 Corporate Friends: Countybank, C.F. Rhem Jr., Greer State Bank Foundation and Vivian Wong/Rebound.

Responses from grant recipients:

Victoria Salvat/Chandler Creek Elementary School
“I am so excited to hear that my grant proposal has been accepted by the Greater Greer Education Foundation! I am beyond thrilled to be able to implement the project and to give my students the opportunity to use iPads in the classroom. I cannot thank you and the all the people involved enough.”

Patricia Smiley/Skyland Elementary School:
“Thank you for approving the grant proposal on Enhancing Auditory Processing to Develop Reading Comprehension Skills project at Skyland Elementary School.” 

Kara Ponder/Greer High School
“Thank you for your part in providing this wonderful grant opportunity to teachers in the Greer area.”

Jody Dill/Mountain View Elementary School
“I am thankful to be chosen as a grant recipient once again.”

Leah Stafford/Chandler Creek Elementary School
“Thank you so much for your tremendous generosity.”


Congratulations to all our Grant Recipients!

David Dolge, chairman of the GGEF Grants Committee, presents a $1,500 grant to Debbie Holcombe of James F. Byrnes High School. She brought along several students from her FIGHT weight loss/get fit program.
Angie Bryant accepts a $750 grant from Dolge for Skyland Elementary School. At right is Skyland Principal Carolyn Styles.
Jody Dill, Center, of Mountain View Elementary School, accepted a $425 grant. At right is her principal, Jennifer Gibson.
Board Chair Brent Garrett welcomes teachers and guests to the Grants Recepiton at Greer City Hall. Dolge presents a $1,423 grant to Carol Godfrey for the music program at Skyland Elementary School.
Jamie Garrett accepts an $845.88 grant for her Teacher Cadet program at Greer High School. Patricia Smiley accepts a $1,032.95 grant for Skyland Elementary School.
Guests and grant recipients at the reception Jan. 29 at Greer City Hall.
GGEF Chairman Brent Garrett, center, makes his way to the podium.
Mandi Presley of the Dunbar Child Develoopment Center talks with her principal, Doris Santanello.
Kara Ponder, a teacher at Greer High School, accepts a $1,268.82 grant from Dolge. Leah Stafford accepts one of two grants presented to Chandler Creek Elementary School.
Louise Gillepie accepts a $1,452 grant for Wooeland Elementary School. Mandi Presley accepts a $1,500 grant for the Dunbar Child Develoopment Center.
Former chairman Margaret Burch talks to the group about Greer Women Giving for Education, which raised $17,000 in its first year. Greater Greer Chamber of Commerce president Mark Owens accepts a $1,500 grant for the Chamber's Leadershiip Class.
Robin Lutrell accepts a $1,500 grant for Byrnes Freshman Academy. Tracy Quinn accepts a $1,500 grant for Crestview Elementary School.
Victoria Salvat accepts a $1,448 grant for Chandler Creek Elementary School. Greer Mayor Rick Dannel talks with grant recipient Kara Ponder from Greer High School.