Fall 2016 Grants Awarded

The Bedford Education Foundation is proud to announce the funding of seven grants in our Fall 2016 grant cycle, totaling $5,300. Congratulations to all of our grant recipients! To date, the BEF has funded $180,000 towards creative and innovation projects in the Bedford Public Schools.

GRANTS FUNDED AT DAVIS SCHOOL

sharedreadingDavis School teachers Jennifer Wayne-Bartlett, Deborah Davies, and Carly Harary were awarded a $365 grant to support their Next Generation Shared Reading program. Shared reading is interactive reading that occurs when all students can see the print and read the text in unison. The grant will be used to purchase oversized books and eBooks for their first grade classrooms.

compostingSema Arakelian and Deborah Davies were awarded a $900 grant to start a school-wide composting program at Davis School. This program will reduce the amount of garbage that Davis School produces, supplement the soil in the Davis School garden, and help teach the students about the importance of caring for the earth as well as the science of composting.

storytellingReading Interventionist Julie Sutton was awarded a $700 grant for several storytelling kits for the Kindergarten classrooms. Each kit features a big book, plus all the props the students need to retell the story—from hand puppets to soft-stuffed characters.

Special Education teachers Caitlin Hall and Alison Hannah were awarded a $600 grant for materials to help their SAIL and CASE students access the Music curriculum. These electronic devices will allow students with limited verbal skills to participate in classroom routines, sing programmed rhythms, and play instruments. Students will benefit from seeing children of all abilities become participating members of the classroom community.

 

GRANT FUNDED AT JOHN GLENN MIDDLE SCHOOL

standing-desks

Sixth grade teacher Denise Breakall was awarded a $485 grant for two standing desks for her English Language Arts classroom. These desks will help students with excess energy manage it within the confines of the classroom.

 

 

GRANT FUNDED AT BEDFORD HIGH SCHOOL

BHS teachers Celia Gisone and Brittany Morley were awarded a $1664 grant for self-regulating and self-soothing materials and tools for students in the Bridge and SAIL programs. The tools and materials included weighted blankets, a light box, exercise balls, a freestanding punching bag, and a large collection of therapy toys and puzzles.

 

glocksGRANT FUNDED AT THE INTEGRATED PRESCHOOL

Integrated Preschool teacher Shannon Babu was awarded a $600 grant for a collection of drums and glockenspiels to start a Musical Mindfulness program in the three preschool classrooms.

Summer 2016 Grants Awarded

The Bedford Education Foundation (BEF) is proud to announce the funding of ten grants in our Summer 2016 grant cycle, totaling over $13,000. Congratulations to all of our grant recipients! To date, the BEF has funded $168,000 towards creative and innovative projects and materials in the Bedford Public Schools.

GRANTS FUNDED AT DAVIS SCHOOL

buddy benchDavis School teachers Susan Nocera and Amy Corssino were awarded a $1,300 grant for a Buddy Bench for the Davis School playground. A Buddy Bench is a colorful, clearly marked bench designed for students who may have difficulty navigating the process of finding playmates, or finding the confidence to join in, at recess. It will give students the opportunity to both reach out for help and give other students the experience of offering themselves as a friend. The goal of the bench is to teach students to reach out to one another, to eliminate loneliness and to foster friendships on the playground.

Davis School guidance counselor Paula Francis-Springer was awarded a $500 grant for a portable PA Sound System for assemblies in the cafeteria and grade level meeting spaces. This improvement upon current technology will not only add to the success level of the assemblies so close to the heart of the Davis School mission, but can also be used by classroom teachers interested in using this equipment for innovative projects.

GRANTS FUNDED AT LANE SCHOOL

doccamFourth grade teacher Julia Herman was awarded a $1,000 grant for a SMART Document Camera SDC-450 for her classroom. During the school day, the document camera will allow Ms. Herman to instantly share student work and demonstrations with her class and give students the opportunity to share their own learning and process with their peers. Additionally, the document camera can be used to create recordings that students and parents can access at home.

chicksLane School was awarded a $500 grant for materials and supplies for the Lane School Chicken Coop Project led by Keith Kinney and Jean Mickel. Keeping live chickens allows Lane School students to investigate external and internal structures of animals as well as deepen their understanding of animal adaptations. This funding will allow Lane’s creative and innovative school-wide endeavor to flourish in the coming year.

GRANTS FUNDED AT BEDFORD HIGH SCHOOL

proboatBHS Robotics teacher John O’Connor was awarded a $2,800 grant for a robotic model sailboat project. In class, the students will expand their programming and operating skills by working with a 3 foot robotic model sailboat with on-board computers, sensors, and servo motors. The students will take what they know about sailing and teach it to a computer. The computer can “feel” using sensors, “think” with the program the students write, and “act” via servo motors controlling rudders and sails.

BHS teachers Beth Billouin, Scott Stief, and Liana Heldman were awarded a $1,500 grant for a Social Justice Awareness program for all ninth graders. Starting this fall, once every six days during homeroom, all freshmen students will participate in a 20-minute discussion or activity to encourage conversations centered on social justice. The teaching team will host class-wide assemblies and work with Dr. Allyson Livingstone to train discussion leaders and support the initiative through the year.

readingBHS English teachers Cassie Dresser and Sarah Kane were awarded a $450 grant for a classroom set of graphic novels and adapted texts for struggling readers. These texts will allow students to access the original texts in creative ways that will increase the amount of class time analyzing literature and decrease the amount of time spent on basic comprehension of the texts.

PABHS teachers Kimberly Comeiro and Victoria Breslin were awarded a $1,300 grant for Project Adventure Challenge Course Team Building program for the students in the STEP program, a therapeutic program for students who struggle with social-emotional challenges. Project Adventure in Beverly, MA has designed a curriculum that focuses on building trust, teamwork, self-confidence and empathy. Skills learned from this exciting hands-on experience will be integrated into the STEP classroom and carry beyond the students’ time at BHS.

BHS Academic Achievement Center teachers Adelle Girvan, Kathleen Campbell, Jerome Freedman, Carol Twombly, and Lisa Morrison were awarded a $3200 grant to create an innovative learning space. A variety of seating options–comfortable arm chairs, stools with high tables, collaborative work spaces–will help meet the individual needs of each student and encourage the success of BHS’s unique and diverse student body.

BHS Black Student Association club advisor Chris Zellner was awarded an $800 grant for a BSA Speaker Series that will bring in presenters from outside the school to speak with students about key social issues so relevant to our society in 2016. The importance of diversity, life after high school, and the role of social activism will be among the topics presented and discussed.

 

Fall 2015 Grants Awarded

The Bedford Education Foundation (BEF) is proud to announce the funding of nine grants in our Fall 2015 grant cycle, totaling $15,000. Congratulations to all of our grant recipients!

To date, the BEF has funded $155,000 towards creative and innovative projects and materials in the Bedford Public Schools.

 

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Technology Showcase – April 8th

Bedford Public Schools Technology Showcase
Wednesday, April 8, 2015
6:00-7:30pm
Bedford High School

Come and take a closer look at all the different technologies being used in Bedford’s K-12 classrooms to enhance teaching and learning. At the Technology Showcase, students from Davis, Lane, JGMS, and BHS will show you how they use these technologies.

The Bedford Education Foundation is proud to have funded many of the items that will be highlighted at the Showcase, including a 3D printer and a SMART Table.  You’ll see how the use of technology transforms the students’ learning and prepares them to think critically and creatively as productive global citizens.

Don’t miss out on this unique opportunity to become acquainted with new technological innovations that our students use every day! It really is amazing to see the student projects, the poise and pride of the student presenters (K-12), and the technologies in action! We hope to see you there!

BEF Awards Fall 2014 Grants

The Bedford Education Foundation (BEF) is proud to announce the funding of six grants in our November 2014 grant cycle. Congratulations to all of our grant recipients! To date, the BEF has funded $140,000 towards creative and innovative projects and materials in the Bedford Public Schools.


At Davis School, first grade teacher Mrs. Jill Beers was awarded a $2,500 grant for a classroom set of 25 Hokki stools. The HOKKI is an ergonomic stool with a convex base that allows movement – rocking, twisting and turning – which increases students’ attention spans and concentration.Screen Shot 2014-12-14 at 7.58.13 PM

At Lane School, Special Education teachers Elizabeth Larrabee and Christine Shaw were awarded a $3,400 grant for 14 Forte portable word processors to replace outdated AlphaSmarts. The Forte is an assistive technology tool to help students who have difficulty with the writing process. The Forte is loaded with programs and features designed by teachers and specialists specifically to assist and support student writing.
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Lane School Technology Integration Specialist Matt Hall was awarded a $1200 grant for
20 Sphero robotic balls and educational packs. A Sphero connects wirelessly and can carry out orders more than 50 feet away from the iPad used to control it.
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At JGMS, English teacher Kelsey Little was awarded a $245 grant to create a comfy
reading lounge in her 8th grade classroom as a way to encourage reluctant readers.

JGMS teacher Libbey Beinert Hunnewell was awarded a $200 grant for Project Adventure books and games. In addition to using these resources in her own life skills classes, she plans to share these resources with all of JGMS’s teachers with the goal of incorporating Project Adventure activities and experiential learning aspects into every classroom at JGMS.

Bedford High School Robotics and Tech Ed. Teacher John O’Connor was awarded a $620 grant for an ION Air Pro Camera and equipment to mount the camera to the robots that the classes build. His students will be able to see what their robots “see” and use the video in reports of the robots’ performance in different challenges.
ion_air_pro_3_1_0

The BEF Supports District-Wide “Facing History” Initiative

The following article was featured in the Bedford Citizen on August 19, 2014:

FHAO check
Bedford Education Foundation’s Linda White and Marge Heckman presented a generous check to Superintendent Jon Sills and Assistant Superintendent Claire Jackson to support the addition of Facing History and Ourselves to Bedford’s curriculum.

The Bedford Education Foundation (BEF) recently helped kick off a new district-wide collaborative effort in the Bedford public schools to promote cultural proficiency and improve our students’ understanding and appreciation of human differences.

Linda White, outgoing BEF Co-Chair and Marge Heckman, Co-Chair presented a check for $5000 to Bedford school Superintendent Jon Sills and Assistant Superintendent Claire Jackson as the BEF’s contribution toward the new partnership just established between the Bedford Public Schools and Facing History and Ourselves (FHAO).

FHAO is an international organization with roots in Brookline, MA whose mission is “to engage students of diverse backgrounds in an examination of racism, prejudice, and anti-Semitism to promote the development of a more humane and informed citizenry.”

School administration initially consulted with FHAO after several incidents that occurred in the schools during the last school year. Those incidents and an ongoing reevaluation of the social studies curriculum at both the Middle and High Schools have inspired the motivation to help our students better understand the culture of the larger community and the long history of Bedford’s openness and diversity. To that end, the district will partner with FHAO to provide teacher and student resources for a new 8th Grade Social Studies curriculum, direct training of teachers involved, as well as access to all of Facing History’s resources including curriculum development support, speakers and in-service training for grades K-12. While the initial focus is on getting the 8th Grade curriculum up and running for this fall, there will also be ongoing efforts taking place at each of the schools to incorporate aspects of the FHAO curriculum into existing programs and continue to review and revise curricula as needed.

If residents would like to help

The total cost for this program is approximately $35,000. Given that this partnership agreement occurred after the normal budget cycle, the current school budget is not able to provide full funding. The district will make every effort to tweak out funding from the current budget as a result of staffing changes. Superintendent Sills will also be reaching out to the community for additional fundraising to be directed specifically toward the cost of FHAO. The BEF has agreed to serve as the conduit for these funds. Anyone wishing to make donations toward the cost of the FHAO initiative can make checks payable to: Bedford Education Foundation, indicating in the memo line that the funds are to be directed to FHAO. Please mail checks to: Bedford Education Foundation, 97 McMahon Road, Bedford, MA 01730.

About Bedford Education Foundation

The mission of the BEF is to promote and enhance classroom innovation and creativity through direct grants to individual classroom teachers and school administrators. Since 2008, the BEF has awarded a total of $130,977 in grants across all Bedford schools. A complete list of grants awarded is available at the BEF website: www.bedfordeducation.org.

The BEF board would like to thank Linda White for her tireless dedication and countless hours of service to the organization since 2008. Linda has been an active member of the Bedford schools community for many years. Her willingness to try new things and show up anywhere and anytime help was needed are legendary! She has recently stepped down from her co-chair position and we all wish her the best.