FACF announces recipients of Classroom Teacher Wish grants

The Fort Atkinson Community Foundation is pleased to announce that 2021 Classroom Teacher Wish grants, totaling $5,000, were recently awarded to 12 teachers in the School District of Fort Atkinson.

At the start of this school year, public school teachers in the School District of Fort Atkinson had the opportunity to apply to the Foundation for grants of up to $500 for specific materials, supplies, equipment or a program to assist a teacher with a new or an existing project in their classroom.

This grant program was begun by the Foundation in 2019 to help teachers improve their classroom beyond what tax dollars could support. As Foundation Chairman Michael Bender explained, “We want our public-school teachers to know that if they have a good idea about something that might make their classroom environment better for our students, we’d like to help make that happen.”

A review committee of three retired Fort Atkinson educators reviewed all the applications and ranked them. The Foundation then went down the list and funded as many as the endowed Classroom Teacher Wish Fund would allow. The total amount awarded was $5,000.

2021 Classroom Teach Wish grant recipients are as follows:

Barrie Elementary School
• Art teacher Barry Helgestad for 3D pens for students to construct tangible solutions for design-related problems.

Fort Atkinson High School
• Math teacher Casey Klein for four graphing calculators in an effort to build up to a full classroom set of 25 calculators.
• Art teacher Frank Korb for wall material for more easily displaying student art work.

Luther Elementary School
• First-grade teacher Jessica Ehlers for a variety of flexible seating options.
• Second-grade teacher Beth Young for flexible seating swivel stools.

Purdy Elementary School
• Music teacher Holly Dow for a collection of small percussion instruments for her music classroom.
• Early Childhood teacher Rebecca Brown for special equipment for her special needs students.
• Second-grade teacher Jeanette Mares for small motor skills materials to help with ‘soft start’ mornings.
• Fifth-grade teacher Kayla Telfer for flexible seating options and books.

Rockwell Elementary School
• Third-grade teacher Heather Walters for book bins, a book cart, and high quality social/emotional books.
• Third-grade teacher Devan Pomykalski for independent reading level books.
• Music teacher Amanda Hein for handheld musical instruments to be used by all students.

The Classroom Teacher Wish grants are awarded annually and the next application window will open on August 1, 2022.

Anyone interested in supporting this grant program can donate to the Foundation’s endowed Classroom Teacher Wish Fund. The total amount available for awards in 2022 will be approximately 4% of that fund, so the more this invested fund grows, the more teachers the Foundation can help.

To learn more about the program, visit www.fortfoundation.org and click on the Grant Info tab to review the full Classroom Teacher Wish Grant guidelines, or contact Sue Hartwick, FACF executive director at (920) 563-3210 or via email at facf@fortfoundation.org.