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MCEFLogoFigment_Sept 2013

The Michigan City Education Foundation recently awarded several small grants to teachers for innovative approaches in the classroom for the 2014-15 school year.

The recipients teach in grades kindergarten through eighth in Michigan City area public and parochial schools. A total of 38 grants were awarded for $11,589.16, benefiting 12 Schools, 63 Teachers and 3,075 Students. Many of the project supplies purchased can be used over and over again, so the impact can be ongoing.

The Michigan City Education Foundation (MCEF), a component fund of the Unity Foundation of La Porte County, was formed in 1994 to encourage and recognize outstanding teacher projects. Three groups came together – the Chamber of Commerce, Mr. and Mrs. Burton Ruby, and Mary Lou Linnen. Each contributed funds to create a permanent endowment of more than $150,000.
Earnings from this fund are used to make grants to teachers for generations to come. So far over the past two decades, the endowment has awarded more than $192,000 to benefit approximately 23,000 students – illustrating the great value over time of creating such permanent funding streams.

Anyone can make a tax-deductible contribution to the Michigan City Education Foundation Fund. For more information call the Unity Foundation at 879-0327, or email

Mary Lou Linnen, Michigan City Education Foundation co-founder, and committee chair Heidi Jaffee announced the new grant recipients and projects.

Jaffee added, “Many innovative applications were submitted by teachers this fall and the MCEF Committee is very excited about the awards that were recently granted.”

The recipients include:

Barker Middle School
Erin Frever, Infusing Technology in the Classroom, $347.98
Jill Grabowski, Jumping Jiminy – Tree Frogs Here? $325
Amy Hamann, Christina Tauber – STEM in the Real World Using IMOVIE Learning, $319.80
Tamara McKee, Project TECH (Technology & Education for Children), $350
Kelly Tokoly-Rothermel, Picture This: The Business of Photography, $335.12

Krueger Middle School
Erica Ackerson, Fitness Feedback, $298.12
Sarah Good, Pioneer Days/Living Indiana History Museum , $350

Edgewood Elementary School
Teresa Pavloff, Dream Bigger-Drama Club, $225

Joy Elementary School
Natalie Hudson, Chris Kiser, Minds in Motion, $156.86
Meg Kanyer, Natasha Magnuson, Sam White, Family Fun Night, $350
Heather Ochoa, Deborah Moore, In the News–In the Know! $315.70
Kimberly Stepp, Nadia Dabagia, Lauren Stacks, Moby Max Me, $350

Knapp Elementary School
Elizabeth Law, Math, Engineering, Organization, and Writing (MEOW), $345.05
Connie Myres, Investigating Sounds, $249
LouAnn Porter, Dem Bones, $223.77
Joshua Schultz, Native Trees of Indiana, $315.65
Rachel Ward, Getting KIDS cRAZy about READING, $ 99.95

Lake Hills STEM Magnet School
Lara Byers, STEMtastic Kindergarten Engineers, $318.88
Rebecca Kozlik, Sowing STEM Seeds for Our Future, $ 349.85
Erin Lozano, Sarah Hernandez, Rachael Leir, Blast from the Past: Now and Then, $254.10
DeAnna Munoz, Janis Mitchell, Penny Will, Calling All Writers, $350
Sheri Wagner, Taking Technology to the Classroom, $ 329.21

Marsh Elementary School
Alisa Carlson, Encouraging Critical Thinkers, $265.65
Sue Cusick, Oh My, Oh My, A Butterfly! $297.97
Susan Shell, Butterflies and Ladybugs and Ants, Oh My! $350

Pine Magnet School for the Performing and Visual Arts
Sharon Arndt, Craig Keson, Megan Orlando, Amanda Bair, Pathway to our Backyard – Exploring the Forest, $350
Tisa Cunningham,Wild World Of Words, $233.20
Julie Schmidt, The Arts in Literature, $350
Elizabeth Schreeg, Art History Comes Alive! $345

Springfield Elementary School
Amber Large, Biography Museum, $350
Kristin Smith, Inquisitive Informational Writers, $300
Ashley Solano, Project Listening Station, $350
Janelle Spolyar, SHIFT Students’ Thinking Skills Into High GEAR! $222.90
Sheri Tuesburg, Expository Writing Experts, 300
Melissa Wise, Kinder Games! $265.40

Notre Dame Catholic School
Edwin Shelton, H.A.T.S. off to Notre Dame Catholic School, $350

Queen of All Saints Catholic School
Edwin Shelton, Wild, Wonderful, Winter Hats, $350

St. Paul Lutheran School
Melissa Bushnell, Next Generation Science Initiative , $350

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