AEF awards more than $10,000 in teacher grants

The Aldine Education Foundation (AEF) awarded six teacher grants to educators throughout the district as the AEF “Prize Posse” surprised them with a visit to announce their grants on Friday, Dec. 12.

The grants announced on Dec. 12 totaled $10,841. Over the last three years, AEF has awarded 20 teaching grants for a total of $49,151.

AEF Prize Patrol

Left to right: Ann Hartman, Sidney Brewer, Nadine Kujawa, Judy Hoya, Patti Acosta, Stacey Smith and Jeff Hartman.

Their first stop was MacArthur High School, where teacher Jennifer Forshee received a $1,000 grant to implement a reading program that will impact 240 students. “I have discovered that most of my students avoid reading at all costs,” she said. “I want to create a classroom library full of titles that interest students and inspire them to read a little each class period for their enjoyment.”

MacArthur teachers Eva Lanczos and Ruth Wells received a $2,500 grant to provide field trips for 45 recent arrival English Language Learning students to experience Houston, while simultaneously practicing conversational English.

The next stop was to MacArthur Ninth Grade School where teachers Susan Pitchford and L.A. Blackman received a $2,200 grant that will impact 100 ninth-grade students and help them become better acquainted with algebra, biology, health and dance.

The “Prize Posse” then headed to Teague Middle School where it awarded a $681 grant to teachers Julie Nighswander and Barbara Lott-Johnson. They will use the funds to impact students in English, math and history and also extend Teague’s after-school peer tutorial program.

The next stop was to Stovall Middle School where teacher Lily Jagtiani received a $774 grant to impact 11 students and fund a program to provide them a more structured learning environment in their special education classroom.

The “Prize Posse” then arrived at Aldine Ninth Grade School where teacher Dillon Holm received a $786 grant to fund a program that will acquire the necessary equipment to conduct an experiment using gel electrophoresis equipment to fulfill a TEKS requirement. Holm’s grant will impact 750 students.

The final stop of the day was made at Carver High School where teacher Kiersten Woodward received a $2,900 grant to provide more hand-on engaging activities for her 120 physics students.

Representing AEF on the “Prize Posse” were AEF Board Members Nadine Kujawa, a former Aldine ISD Superintendent, and Patti Acosta, Jeff Hartman and his wife Ann, and Stacey Smith, and AEF consultant Judy Hoya.