HAEF awards nearly $18K in innovation grants

HAEF awards nearly $18K in innovation grants

The Harlingen Area Educational Foundation, a group of volunteers dedicated to providing additional resources for students and teachers, awarded nearly $18,000 in grants last month.

These generous grants will help not only teachers and schools but the students they serve.

“Harlingen CISD is immensely grateful to the foundation for these grants, which will support our teachers and students across multiple campuses,” said Superintendent Dr. Art Cavazos. “I want to thank the entire foundation and its members for dedicating their time to improving the lives of our students and community.”

Grants include funds for STEM labs, sensory pathways, and TV studios.

Long Elementary School was provided funds for an on-campus science lab, which will l house materials and workspace areas for students. The lab will immerse 5th-grade students in science curriculum as they prepare for STAAR testing.

Treasure Hills, Travis, and Milam Elementary Schools will receive funding for sensory pathways. Sensory pathways provide opportunities for students with sensory needs to have an outlet to release energy in a safe and welcoming space.

Also at Milam Elementary School, a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) lab will be strategically equipped with tools to inspire students to learn while developing problem-solving and collaboration. Students will be encouraged to work as scientists and engineers and use their curiosity to develop ideas through creative solutions.

Funding for the projects was provided through the foundation, which is led by volunteers committed to the nonprofit’s mission.

“The foundation’s mission is based on helping teachers exercise their creativity and encourages them to teach in different ways while thinking outside of the box,” said HAEF Board President Belinda Zapata. “A lot of our teachers require extra tools or supplies, and we hope these grants allow them to further their impact in HCISD classrooms.”

In March, the foundation raised more than $117,000 for grants like these as well as for scholarships. This year’s fundraiser included special guests such as Linda Burke of Burke Children’s Dentistry and longtime educator Lupita Muñiz, who were instrumental in raising the money.

“Our community is so giving, and it’s nice to know our community comes together to support our students and school district,” said Dr. Burke. “The amount that we raised reflects the great place we live in and our commitment to our students, teachers, and school district. It’s exciting to know the money we raised will go a long way in helping children for years to come.”

Innovative Teaching Grant awardees

Treasure Hills Elementary School for sensory pathway

Travis Elementary School for sensory pathway

Milam Elementary School for sensory pathway

Long Elementary School for science lab

Bowie Elementary School for TV studio

Milam Elementary School for EduSpark, a literacy program

Milam Elementary School for STEM Lab

Harlingen High School South for a butterfly garden

Treasure Hills Elementary School for a mobile maker, a learning space that encourages collaboration

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