Foundation Awards Nearly $250,000 to City Schools - See A New Video on Education

To understand the scope of the Community Foundation's commitment to education, please watch this video.

Four Grand Rapids Public elementary schools received nearly $139,000 in total grants from the Meijer Good Schools for Grand Rapids Program. In addition, sixty-four teachers and students from schools in Grand Rapids received a total of $99,297 in Good Classrooms mini-grants. These schools and classrooms were recently recognized at a special event.

The Meijer Good Schools for Grand Rapids Program is an initiative of the Grand Rapids Community Foundation and is funded by the Meijer Foundation, with support from the Bank of America Charitable Foundation. The program rewards area elementary schools based on their ability to address nine benchmarks for student success. Grant awards are based on each school’s student achievement levels and other criteria.

The four 2009 Meijer Good Schools grant awards winners are:

  • Campus Elementary School was awarded a $47,000 grant. Campus was recognized for a strong three-year turnaround led by parents, teachers and students who shared a singular focus: “average is not the goal and failure is not an option”. The principal and staff have also demonstrated a clear willingness to go the “extra mile” for students.
  • Coit Creative Arts Academy was awarded a $23,000 grant. Coit was recognized for being a highly inclusive and creative community, with high expectations for learning. The school’s unique blend of academics and creative arts programming meet the needs of the “whole student”.
  • Palmer Elementary School was awarded a $44,000 grant. Palmer was recognized for demonstrating how the two cornerstones of character education and high expectations work together to create a supportive, cohesive and enriching learning environment. Palmer staff, students and parents make a concerted effort to collaborate and share resources. The school also boasts a language center with students from all corners of the globe.
  • Shawmut Hills Elementary School was awarded a $25,000 grant. Shawmut was recognized for its high levels of student achievement – consistently among the best in the district. The school is also recognized for its high degree of parental involvement.

The Community Foundation is awarded $99,297 for Good Classrooms minigrants to 64 teachers and students in Grand Rapids Catholic, Grand Rapids Christian and Grand Rapids Public Schools. Examples of this year’s projects include:

  • $1,477 for the Second Step Violence Prevention program at Kent Hills Elementary, to allow students to practice social skills such as empathy, emotion management, and problem solving.
  • $500 for Enhancing Critical Thinking Skills at CA Frost Environmental Science Academy, to provide students with board and puzzle games to increase critical thinking in math.
  • $750 for Recycling Galore at Shawmut Hills Elementary, to purchase worm farms, a garden composter and leaf eater for use in science class and in the school garden.
  • $3,000 for The Scorpion Sting at Southwest Community Campus, to allow students to write and publish a bi-lingual monthly magazine about science and social studies topics.

The Good Classrooms program is funded by the Mary I. and Robert C. Pew Donor Advised Fund.

“The Grand Rapids Public Schools are grateful for the support of the Grand Rapids Community Foundation and the Meijer Good Schools program,” said Grand Rapids Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Bernard Taylor. “With the funds from these grant dollars, many of our schools will have additional opportunities for student enrichment and other initiatives that support learning. The program also serves as an incentive for staff and students that their achievements have not gone unnoticed, and there is a reward for good schools that are doing good work.”

Grand Rapids Community Foundation’s vision is a city in which every child receives a quality education. Its education strategy is four-pronged, ensuring that every child has access to:

  • Good Social Supports
  • Good Growth Experiences
  • Good Schools and Good Classrooms
  • Good College Opportunities