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Worcester Schools get thousands in grants from CFES

Teachers from Worcester County Schools last Thursday receive thousands in grants from the Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore during an awards ceremony in Salisbury.

By Josh Davis, Associate Editor

(Nov. 15, 2018) Schools in Worcester, Wicomico and Somerset Counties have f $96,242 in education grants from the Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore.

Grants were announced last Thursday during the annual Community Foundation Awards ceremony in Salisbury.

Carrie N. Sterrs, Worcester County Public Schools coordinator of public relations and special programs, said the county is especially proud of the Mary Gay Calcott Award of Excellence given to Snow Hill Middle School.

The school’s Project LIT Book Club took home the Calcott Award and a bonus grant from the Community Foundation’s Mary Gay Calcott Memorial Fund.

“The award is named for the late Mary Gay Calcott, a professor of English at Salisbury University whose life embodied her ideals of teaching students to think, to express themselves with clarity and to care about the world they live in,” according to a Community Foundation press release.

Additional Worcester County schools that received awards were:

  • Snow Hill and Pocomoke High Schools will participate in the Project LIT book club, which helps teachers and students to increase access to high quality, culturally relevant books in and out of the classroom (organized by Cassidy Hamborsky).
  • Buckingham Elementary School’s April Eichelberger will create a Lending Library to enhance the use of its outdoor classroom and garden.
  • Buckingham Elementary School will have an artist in residence who will work with the students to create a clay mural to display in the school, coordinated by Melissa Reid.
  • Cedar Chapel Special School will create an interactive Lego wall to use as a hands-on tool for learning math concepts and creative communication.
  • Cedar Chapel Special School will create “Zones of Regulation,” which use colors and other visuals to identify emotions and to learn social skills.
  • Ocean City Elementary School will pilot the Kimochis social emotional curriculum, which uses specially designed stuffed animals to teach students to identify emotions and express their feelings in a healthy way.
  • Pocomoke Elementary School will purchase virtual reality headsets for their “Explore, Discover and Engage through 21st Century Learning” initiative.
  • Pocomoke Middle School will purchase 500 copies of Jocko Willink’s “The Way of the Warrior Kid” for a “One School, One Book” initiative led by teacher Jennifer Beach.
  • Pocomoke Middle School will purchase new books to engage more students in their Project LIT book club, led by teacher Brian Cook.
  • Pocomoke Middle School’s new Surfrider Club, led by teacher Karen McCabe, will take a trip to Chincoteague Bay Field Station and lead the school in an Earth Day celebration.
  • Pocomoke Middle School’s Christina McQuaid will purchase restorative practice books to improve students’ behavior and decision-making, and reduce office referrals.
  • Snow Hill Elementary School will read “Stuart Little” as part of a new “One School, One Book” summer program led by Jennifer Spivey.
  • Snow Hill Middle School will host their own Project LIT book club and will engage students in meaningful service work in the community, coordinated by Beau Williams.
  • Stephen Decatur Middle School will purchase virtual reality headsets to take students on virtual field trips and bring history and science to life.

“The educators creating these programs are inspiring the future leaders of our community,” Community Foundation President Erica Joseph said. “CFES believes education is vital to strengthening our communities. We are proud to have increased this year’s Education Awards Grant funding by over $24,000 from last year.”

Education awards are made in conjunction with National Education Week through a competitive process to public and private grade schools throughout the Lower Eastern Shore of Maryland, according to the release.

“Grants are made to those schools that have developed innovative programs to enhance education and improve the social, emotional and physical well-being of their students and communities,” the release said.