DCHS teachers awarded grants

Published 8:12pm Thursday, July 18, 2013

The city of Valley Grande awarded $1,500 in grant money to two teachers at Dallas County High School in their regular council meeting Monday.

Cathleen Johnson, science teacher, received $1,000 for her “Food for Thought” project, which involves installing raised beds for vegetable plants in an outdoor classroom.

“The traditional classroom instruction does not provide the opportunity for students to interact with the environment and develop an understanding of the application of classroom instruction to real-world experience,” Johnson wrote in her proposal. “The vegetable beds would be used to introduce students to agriculture and the outdoors, provide an alternate classroom setting and provide real-world experiences in a living laboratory.”

Through installing the raised beds, Johnson said she hopes to promote sustainability and economic growth in her classroom instruction.

Amy Reeves, library media specialist for Dallas County High, received $500 from the council to promote a literacy campaign for the 2013-2014 school year. With the grant money, Reeves said she plans to purchase Ebooks and Interactive Readers, which will “support the needs of adolescent learners by providing unlimited access to books that support the newly adopted College and Career Readiness standards.”

“The overall goal of ‘The Catch the Reading Bug!’ project is to increase reading achievement through literacy and technology for the 587 students enrolled at Dallas County High School,” Reeves wrote in her grant proposal. “The [project] will promote the goals of our school-wide literacy program by encouraging students to read 25 books during the school year and ten books during the summer.”

Donna Downs, Valley Grade city council member, said its important the council invest grant money in Dallas County schools teachers as this promotes a better learning environment.

“This gives the ability for teachers to go outside of the box with classroom instruction,” Downs said. “This gives them extra money to pursue other opportunities.”

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