The Innovation Fund Foundation is pleased to announce the grant awardees for the 2021 Innovative Education Fund Grant Program. The grant opportunity application period opened to public schools, school districts and 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations in May of this year. Forty-four grant applications were submitted with innovative projects designed to engage students in an inventive way demonstrating the potential for lasting impact on the academic environment.

The grant applications were peer reviewed by a board of individuals representing the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement and the Georgia Department of Education. The Innovative Fund Foundation’s board of directors reviewed the final rubric of scores and chose awardees representing three Georgia school districts, three charter schools, and two nonprofit organizations working with public schools. Each will receive grant awards of between $2,500 and $10,000 each.

 

2021 Innovative Education Fund Grant Recipients

Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology, Gwinnett County Public Schools, $3,920
Priority Points: Schools/School Districts Identified as Minority Majority

Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology (GSMST) and Maxwell High School (MHS) of Gwinnett County Public Schools will partner to implement a video game and arcade construction project at district middle schools with low graduation rates. Through implementing a meaningful and engaging, STEAM-centered project, faculty and students from GSMST and MHS hope to hone students’ computer science and creativity skills to keep them on the pathway to successful middle school completion.
 

Ivy Preparatory Academy, State Charter School, $10,000
Priority Points: Schools/School Districts Identified as Minority Majority

Ivy Preparatory Academy is a kindergarten through eighth grade school for girls located in DeKalb County. The school will use the grant funds to implement Raspberry Pi, a program designed to teach students the fundamentals of Computer Science. Through the program, the school hopes to strengthen female students’ math and computational skills.
 

Merry Acres Middle School, Dougherty County Schools, $8,000
Priority Points: Schools/School Districts Identified as Minority Majority

Merry Acres Middle School of Dougherty County Schools will use the grant to purchase Glowforge, a 3-D printer software which allows users to design and create gardens tools and plant markers. With the tools and markers, students will build a school garden where they will harvest the crops to use in school lunches and donate to Helping Hands Ending Hunger.
 

Mountain Education Charter High School, White Site, $10,000
Priority Points: Schools Identified in the Bottom 5% of Performance

Mountain Education Charter High School (White Site; Cleveland, Georgia) will implement a Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Nature Campus to provide students and staff with a natural setting to conduct resiliency and reflection activities. The Nature Campus will include a SEL curriculum, an indoor classroom and community center, and a pottery and art classroom. The campus will serve more than 2,400 at-risk students.
 

Northside Middle School, Houston County Schools, $10,000
Priority Points: Schools/School Districts Identified as Minority Majority

Northside Middle School of Houston County Schools will use the Innovative Education Fund grant to establish a STEAM Farm to enhance hands-on and project-based learning. Specifically, the grant will allow the school to expand the recycling program and raised vegetable beds, as well as add hydroponic towers, a quail hatchery, arboretum, and seating for an outdoor classroom. The school’s goal is for teachers to utilize the STEAM Farm to better engage students in all content areas.
 

RISE Augusta, Inc. & Lamar Milledge Elementary School and W.S. Hornsby Elementary School, Richmond County Schools, $10,000
Priority Points: Schools Identified in the Bottom 5% of Performance

Rise Augusta, Inc., a nonprofit organization serving Richmond County Schools, provides tutoring and wraparound services to the lowest-performing schools in the district. The organization will use the grant to provide Lamar Milledge Elementary School and W.S. Hornsby Elementary School with tutoring services during school hours, wraparound supports including school supplies, dental work, and eyeglasses, and enrichment opportunities, including after-school care.
 

STE(A)M Truck & Clayton County Public Schools, $5,000
Priority Points: Schools Identified in the Bottom 5% of Performance

STE(A)M Truck will partner with Clayton County Public Schools (CCPS) to provide 1,240 students with intensive, hands-on learning experiences. The STEAM-centered experiences are aligned with Georgia Department of Education Standards of Excellence and have a track record of success in the communities in which the experiences have traveled. STE(A)M Truck and CCPS hope to engage students in the STEM subject areas and, ultimately, spark interest in STEM careers.
 

Wesley International Academy of Atlanta Public Schools, $5,000
Priority Points: Schools/School Districts Identified as Minority Majority

Wesley International Academy (WIA) will use the Innovative Education Fund grant to launch an e-book library collection. Due to the pandemic, WIA students are experiencing a learning slide and leadership and faculty determined that access to a refreshed, diverse online book collection is one of the antidotes. Additionally, in the event of school closure due to COVID-19, the electronic library will provide students access to online books.

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Malenka Warner
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Malenka.Warner@gosa.ga.gov