WIF awards $58,225 in grants to District

WI Foundation awards 4 grants to push 32-year total past $1 million
Posted on 07/09/2021

Graphic of WIF

The West Irondequoit Foundation, the non-profit organization that benefits the West Irondequoit CSD, has announced four grants it will fund for the 2021-22 school year. That pushes its 32-year total past the $1 million milestone to $1,024,767.

Established in 1987 to receive gifts/donations to enhance educational opportunities, the WIF raises money to underwrite grants for innovative projects, equipment and pilot programs at West Irondequoit that cannot be supported by the District’s annual operating budget. All grants must be initiated by teachers or staff. Applications are submitted, reviewed and the WIF Board of Directors votes annually on which to approve. This year a total of $58,225 was awarded for four grants. The 2021-22 grants are:

Games for decodable texts to support the science of reading: These will help K-6 students practice phonics and phonemic awareness skills. Students need multiple repetitions to master skills, but too often become disengaged when it feels like they’re doing the same thing over and over. These games will be available via a shared space/library at each building and provide multiple opportunities for students to practice decoding skills while still fostering a love for reading. Decodable texts give students the chance to engage with a text that does not have too many complicated words and provides experiences with words matched to specific features students are learning about. Grant authors: Liz Lawson, Lori May, Katie Plukas, teachers.

Diverse toys for kindergarten: From dolls to food items, this provides toys that are representative of our diverse community. This will help students build social skills in a supportive environment where they can ask questions and explore different perspectives and cultures. Some toys also represent those who might have hearing aids, leg braces, loss of vision and more. Grant authors: Julie Pfenninger, Sara Trost, Meaghan Yeatts, teachers.

World Music Drumming: WMD lessons support our district initiatives for social-emotional learning and culturally relevant pedagogy. Teachers and students sit in circles with each student making music using Guiro, Cabasa, Shekere, Kokoriko and a variety of other percussion instruments. WMD lessons include focus words such as respect, focus, teamwork, listen, respond, share, etc. Students learn, among other things, to be active listeners, how to be part of a team via musical improvisation and build a community and an ensemble. Funds for instruments and for two middle school teachers to attend four days of curriculum-specific training in Elizabethtown, Pa. Grant authors: Anna Conti and Kelly Petro, music teachers.

IHS Fitness Center Upgrades: This renovation/redesign will transform the existing space and provide a more open, modern area to promote lifetime health and wellness for our students, athletic teams and community. New, modernized equipment will focus on racks, weights, ropes and plyometric box sets, among other upgrades. The redesigned space will create separate areas for more supervised, functional training and machine-based circuits, allowing activities to happen simultaneously. Physical Education teachers will design instruction to meet student outcomes identified in the state P.E. Standards. Community Education also will have increased opportunities to provide a variety of classes. Grant author: Kimberly Schon, WICSD Director of Health, Physical Education and Athletics.

For more information on the WIF, visit its website: www.westirondequoitfoundation.org