Steamboat Springs School Board expected to accept $50,000 in Education Fund Board grants | SteamboatToday.com

Steamboat Springs School Board expected to accept $50,000 in Education Fund Board grants

— The Steamboat Springs School Board on Monday is expected to accept several innovation grants from the Education Fund Board that the group tentatively awarded during a recent meeting.

The Education Fund Board Grant Commission was tasked with sifting through several innovation grant applications and approving about $50,000 in gifts, which they recommended the Education Fund Board to award.

Also at Monday’s meeting:

The board is expected to approve the hiring of an owner's representative for the district to move forward with "pre-bond" work for constructing improvements at district facilities.

The decision to hire an owner's representative came after a demographer last fall told the district that increasing enrollment would leave district schools at or above capacity, and a third elementary school likely was needed.

The district has selected RLH Engineering Inc., of Windsor, Colorado, and will ask the board to sign a consultant agreement during Monday's meeting.

For a full agenda of the board meeting, see http://www.sssd.k12.co.us.

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The grant selections were made by the EFB Grant Commission on Dec. 17 and presented to the EFB during a meeting Wednesday.

Innovation grants are the first of three types of grants the EFB will award during the 2014-15 school year. Next, the EFB and the Grant Commission will award community group grants, followed by school grants.

The innovation grants awarded include a $7,450 grant to transform a courtyard area at Yampa Valley High School into an outdoor classroom by adding trees, shade wings and other enhancements.

Another grant for $15,000 will be used for training and tools to create a Makerspace at the Steamboat Springs High School library. The space will be a hands-on innovation lab that students can use to explore technology, interests and career pathways.

"The commission was really excited about how innovative that was," Dean Massey, a Grant Commission member, said during the EFB meeting last week.

Another grant will give $1,660 to first grade classrooms at Strawberry Park Elementary School to acquire stability balls for students to sit on during class.

The balls will allow students an outlet for their energy by being able to move while learning as well as improving posture and other benefits, according to the grant application.

"Moving while learning can be extremely helpful in keeping students focused, improving ability to retain new information, and building upon prior knowledge," read the application, submitted by first grade teacher Alexandra Bigras-Masse. "We feel the need to incorporate student's instinct to move in the learning process, rather than attempt to suppress it."

Other Steamboat grants included $2,000 for a Denver field trip for high school English language learner students and $2,300 for iPads at Soda Creek Elementary School.

The School Board is expected to review and accept the grant money during its Monday meeting, which begins at 5:15 p.m. at the George P. Sauer Human Services Center, 325 Seventh St. The meeting will begin with an executive session to discuss a personnel matter and then reopen to the public at 5:30 p.m.

To reach Teresa Ristow, call 970-871-4206, email tristow@SteamboatToday.com or follow her on Twitter @TeresaRistow

Also at Monday’s meeting:

The board is expected to approve the hiring of an owner’s representative for the district to move forward with “pre-bond” work for constructing improvements at district facilities.

The decision to hire an owner’s representative came after a demographer last fall told the district that increasing enrollment would leave district schools at or above capacity, and a third elementary school likely was needed.

The district has selected RLH Engineering Inc., of Windsor, Colorado, and will ask the board to sign a consultant agreement during Monday’s meeting.

For a full agenda of the board meeting, see http://www.sssd.k12.co.us.

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