WEAC members earn NEA Foundation grants for enhancing student achievement


Six WEAC members have received grants from the NEA Foundation:

  • Kim Floeter, a secretary, and co-applicant, Patricia Schmidt, of Riverview Elementary School in Wautoma, received a $5,000 Learning & Leadership Grant from the NEA Foundation to complete a study of “Assisting with Early Literacy Instruction: A Manual for Paraprofessionals.” Floeter and her colleagues will deepen their understanding of early literacy instruction by reading, discussing, and practicing literacy skills outlined in the text. They will also raise awareness of their current practice and how to enhance it to improve student achievement.
  • Rhonda Chalone, a music educator of Huegel Elementary School in Madison,  received a $2,000 Learning & Leadership Grant from the NEA Foundation to complete the Orff Certification Level One, a methodology of teaching students music which includes rhythmic speech, singing, body percussion, elemental movement, and improvisation. Upon completion, Chalone will reorganize her curriculum according to the methodology and share her knowledge with colleagues within the district in the form of workshops during fine arts professional development sessions.
  • Alyson Berg, a third grade educator, and co-applicant, Andrea Doyle, of Highland Elementary School in Highland, received a $5,000 Student Achievement Grant from the NEA Foundation to introduce “Item Not Found,” a technology-based project aimed at deepening students’ understanding of content and helping them become independent, self-motivated learners. Students will develop 21st century skills by posing their own questions and finding outside resources for answers.
  • Laona School District counselor Debra Kruger and science teacher Steve Kircher have received a $2,000 Student Achievement Grant from the NEA Foundation to implement the use of a student response system in middle and high school science classes. The system will provide educators immediate feedback and show which students are struggling. Educators will then assess lessons, make adjustments, evaluate success of those adjustments, and increase student learning.

“With these grants, we are supporting educator-driven solutions that contribute to improved student performance in public schools,” said Harriet Sanford, president and CEO of the NEA Foundation. “Our support enables educators to engage in a wide variety of innovative approaches to the benefit of students across the country.”

Nationwide, the NEA Foundation announced that it is awarding grants to 51 educators across 28 states for a total of $177,000.

The NEA Foundation awards two levels of grant funding, $2,000 or $5,000, for two primary categories of grants to public education professionals: Student Achievement Grants for initiatives to improve academic achievement, and Learning and Leadership Grants for high-quality educational professional development activities.

A team of 20 educators, many former grantees, carefully reviewed all applications and evaluated each one against a set of criteria. Funded educator grants were selected for the quality of the grant proposal ideas and their potential for enhancing student achievement.

Over the past decade, the NEA Foundation has invested more than $7.1 million in teaching grants to support the work of almost 4,500 educators from every state in the country to help students succeed. Each year, the Foundation awards approximately 150 Student Achievement and Learning and Leadership Grants. To learn about these educators’ projects, visit the NEA Foundation’s Grantee Archive. Search for grantees and projects by most recent, grade level, subject, state, or keyword.

The NEA Foundation awards its grants to educators three times a year. The next education grant deadline is October 15, 2014. Application forms and a video with step-by-step instructions on how to apply can be found in the Grants to Educators section of the NEA Foundation website.


The NEA Foundation is a public charity supported by contributions from educators’ dues, corporate sponsors, and others. The NEA Foundation supports student success by helping public school educators work with key partners to build strong systems of shared responsibility. Visit www.neafoundation.org for more information.