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Classified in: Business, Covid-19 virus
Subjects: NPT, SRI

Culturally Responsive Curriculum Projects Garner Awards for Academic Enrichment and Teacher Development

SALT LAKE CITY, Dec. 1, 2021 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- With schools beginning a third academic year impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, it's fair to say educators have gone above and beyond the call of duty. For applicants of the McCarthey Dressman Education Foundation's annual grant and scholarship awards, there is still more work to do. Each year, hundreds of educators apply for funding awards to support outstanding enrichment and teacher development projects. This year the proposals selected for funding celebrate culturally relevant strategies for learning. Awardees for the 2021-22 school year have considered carefully how to support students in a time of unprecedented change so that they can experience a sense of well-being about their experience in the world and achieve academic success.

Whether it's connecting to nature to reduce anxiety and learn to cook with local ingredients, sending family literacy kits home with students, or exploring U.S. history through local lenses, projects supported by MDEF give students opportunities to learn by doing and highlight meaningful ways for teachers to engage students in science, technology, engineering, art, and math (STEAM), along with mindfulness and literacy.

"These projects reflect the work of teachers taking on the challenge of reigniting learning after a difficult time in education. We are confident these projects will impact individual students while also informing teaching communities," said Sarah J. McCarthey, President of the Foundation which awarded over $83,000 in grants and scholarships for the 2021-22 academic year.

While the projects take a variety of forms, their focus on connecting the classroom to the lives of each student is evident.

The project "STEAM Camp, Book Clubs and Families at HeART," based in Great Falls, MT, creates bridges between literacy and STEAM related subject matter with student book clubs and workshops for caregivers and parents. Students in the project will learn to lead conversations in "book tastings" and participate in a Summer STEAM Camp.

Immersing students in "hands on" inquiry is also a key focus of these projects. Students participating in "Aire Libre at the Tierra Garden" at Yerba Buena High School in San Jose, California will investigate diverse cultures and perspectives as they learn about nutrition, cook recipes from various countries, and eat healthy foods made from the fresh and organic produce at the garden. A mental health component of Aire Libre will teach students about positive reactions to stress, anxiety, and depression?gardening has been shown to improve all three.

For the 2021-22 academic year, the Foundation has funded two new Academic Enrichment Grants at schools serving minority and economically disadvantaged students; three Teacher Development grants with similar demographics; and four student teacher scholarships. Recipients include:

Academic Enrichment Recipients

Teacher Development Recipients

Scholarship Recipients

The mission of McCarthey Dressman Education Foundation (mccartheydressman.org) is to serve as a catalyst in maximizing the skills and creativity of educators at the K-12 levels and in cultivating pioneering approaches to teaching that result in dynamic student learning. The Foundation sponsors proposals that enhance student learning and educational quality, paying particular attention to those that best serve under-funded schools. The application deadline is April 15 of each year for proposals with significant potential to enrich the educational experiences for youth, but the application will close before that date if 350 submissions have been received.

Media Contact

Tina Kolkebeck, McCarthey Dressman Education Foundation, 1 801.578.1260, [email protected]


SOURCE McCarthey Dressman Education Foundation

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