SOMERS EDUCATION FOUNDATION
Supporting Education for our Future
For a full history of Grants, visit our Grants pages on this website (click here to get started)
Over the last 15 years, the Somers Education Foundation (SEF) has awarded more than $522,000 in professional development and education grants. The number of grants awarded and the size of the grants has grown steadily since the Foundation’s inception.
This unique grant program allows staff to request a grant they believe would benefit their students. The grant is reviewed by the principal and superintendent and they provide comments. The grant then comes to the grant review committee to review. This process allows staff to request seed money for creative, innovative projects they would otherwise not be able to pursue in the regular school budget. These grants and the accelerated technology SEF have changed the way our students, staff and families interact, communicate, and engage while providing valuable knowledge and experience to our students.
A wide variety of grants has been given out, enriching all three schools and every grade from preschool through 12th, and have impacted all departments, including Special Education. The grants have changed the way students are learning and have also helped to bring new programs to the district. For example, classrooms now have technology such as projectors, Mimeo smartboards, and iPads. Teachers and students communicate and interact in a more individualized, engaging way. The Vex Robotics program and the Tech Ed department have grown because of the generous funding of these programs. Our Special Education program has benefited from the addition of a calming room, sensory tools, sensory chairs for the entire district, and the ongoing support of the staff through professional development. Also, SEF has supported the school district’s Music departments through the purchase of numerous instruments, the Art departments with the acquisition of a beautiful new kiln and display boards for the District Art Show, and the Physical Education departments with the addition of heart rate monitors and a climbing wall. The Foundation has also purchased Vernier probes and microscopes for the Science department at the high school, which has allowed our AP programs to keep up with current technology. Our media centers have continued to benefit from SEF funding through various projects with our most recent grant, the Makerspace – a communal area that provides students with the opportunity to be creative, innovative and explore personal interests. On a broader level, the School Messenger has allowed the entire district to better communicate to parents, teachers and the community, as well as the grants that support inter-school communication through WMBA and the Spartan News Network.
The donations named above barely scratch the surface of the impressive variety of grants SEF has awarded over the past 15 years, to say nothing of the dedication of the school district’s teachers, who have submitted education grants as well as taken advantage of the professional development grant opportunities. The Somers Education Foundation continues to encourage teachers and administrators to submit creative grants that allow our school system to grow and remain at the forefront of education.
2004 - SEF President, Lou Bachetti presents the very first grant to Somers High School Science Teacher Mary Anne Butler. Ms. Butler put together an Arson/Forensic Investigation class with help from the Somers Fire Department, the Town of Somers, St. Paul’s /Travelers Insurance Company and the CT State Fire Marshal’s office. Photo Credit: David Butler II.
Mini-History of Grants Awarded