Teachers earn grants from Education Foundation

congratulations on blue background with foundation logo

The Education Foundation of Downers Grove District 58 is awarding 35 grants to District 58 teachers totaling more than $25,000 through its annual Teacher Grants Program. Since its founding, the Foundation has awarded more than $100,000 in grants over the last five years that stimulate teaching and learning. 

“The quality of the grant applications was impressive,” said Foundation Board Grant Chair Anne Healy. “The Foundation is proud to support students and spur learning through these innovative grants,” she said.

Superintendent Dr. Kevin Russell expressed his gratitude to the Education Foundation for their ongoing backing of District 58. He highlighted that this year's grant award has again increased compared to the previous year. “This opens up even more possibilities for teachers to provide unique learning experiences for our students,” he said. “I look forward to seeing the impact these grants have in our classrooms!”

District 58 teachers submitted their grant applications Dec. 1, and the Foundation’s Grants Committee completed a blind review of all grant proposals. The Foundation selected projects that showed a unique capacity for engaging students and/or impacting instruction. Project proposals must align with the District’s curriculum goals and have measurable outcomes, among other requirements.

Congratulations to this year’s teacher grant recipients:

  1. Kristina Cardinal, 3rd grade teacher, Belle Aire, Kindness Club
  2. Gianna Smith, kindergarten teacher, El Sierra, Purposeful Play Please!
  3. Nicole Ferroli, Stephanie Potter, Bernie Homel, reading teachers, O’Neill, Enhancing Classroom Libraries to Including the MOST Wanted Student Texts!
  4. Rachel Katoll, resource program; Katelyn Morgan, math teacher; Kayla Kinder, reading teacher, O’Neill; Flexible Seating
  5. Elizabeth Stroud, teacher librarian, Fairmount, Culturally Diverse Books
  6. Janet Hecht, music teacher, O’Neill, World Music Drumming
  7. Natalie Notardonato, EL teacher, Lester, English Language Vocabulary Development
  8. Susan Dillon, preschool coordinator; One Book, One PreSchool
  9. Megan DuPass, reading specialist, El Sierra; Flyleaf materials
  10. Stacie Hamilton, 2nd-3rd grade RISE teacher, Indian Trail; STEM Materials for Special Education Students
  11. Colleen Brejcha, KC Chick, 6th grade teachers, Fairmount; Can I Believe My Eyes: Cow Eye Dissection
  12. Janet Peters, reading specialist, Indian Trail; Science of Reading and the Power of Decodable Text Year 2
  13. Megan DuPass, reading specialist and Mary Loversky, teacher librarian, El Sierra; Ramped-Up Read Alouds
  14. Michelle Schmidt, occupational therapist and Melissa Eckdahl, resource teacher, Kingsley; Vertical Learning
  15. Monica Eilers, 5th Grade Teacher, Pierce Downer; Flexible Seating for All
  16. Katie Hurckes, interventionist, Indian Trail, Family Math Night
  17. Sabrina Breault, 1st grade teacher and Beth Kamano, reading specialist, Pierce Downer; Decodable Library - Books ALL Students Can Read
  18. Kendra Meyers and Kelly Wyatt, 1st grade teachers, El Sierra; Letter/Sound Cards for Systematic Phonics Instruction
  19. Christina Forzley, teacher librarian, Lester, Lester Library Flexible Seating
  20. Mary Loversky, teacher librarian, El Sierra, Nonfiction for Beginner Readers
  21. Michele Crowley, EL teacher, Highland; Thematic Stories and Felt Boards for English Learners
  22. Alison Glennon, reading specialist, Fairmount, Decodable Books
  23. Theresa Farrell, band teacher, Herrick, Belle Aire, Henry Puffer; Record and Reflect:  Creating a Meaningful Student-Led Cycle of Feedback in Band
  24. Kate Blackburn, speech-language pathologist, Kingsley; Interactive Whiteboard Table
  25. Melissa Swallows, 3rd grade teacher and Alison Glennon, reading specialist, Fairmount; Decoding with Decodable Readers
  26. Chelsea Borchers, teacher librarian, Indian Trail; Bits Box Kits
  27. Leslie Hesterman, teacher librarian, Hillcrest, We are Still Here: Exploring Native American Culture and History
  28. Alecia Probst, Indian Trail and Kendall Buege, Henry Puffer, both preschool teachers; Gross Motor Equipment
  29. Matt Leiser, 2nd grade teacher, Lester; Fostering Creativity: A Transformative Tool for Digital Learning
  30. Katie Porter, resource teacher, Whittier, Multi-Sensory Tools for Students with Dyslexia
  31. Tracey Ratner, principal, Indian Trail; Showcase our Students and Staff!
  32. Brittany Sanfillippo, 3rd grade teacher, Highland; Standing Desks for a Flexible Classroom Environment
  33. Jamie Krier, teacher librarian, Kingsley; Forward Facing Picture Book Displays
  34. Christina Gamboa, resource teacher/interventionist, El Sierra; Fostering Engagement with Reading and Math
  35. Patricia Miller, 6th grade teacher, Whittier, Classroom Library Overhaul