• Major Grants 2018 - 2019

    Bots, Dash and Dots

    Project Director – Toni Allen
    Co-Project Director – Megan Gause, William Volk, Deidre Harley
    Timrod, Wallace Gregg, Greenwood and McLaurin Elementary Schools - $42,557.26


      This grant will provide these schools in Florence 1 with STEM education with a robotic implementation focus.  The South Carolina Department of Education now has standards for the students in South Carolina classrooms to integrate the four domains; science, technology, engineering and math.  Providing robotics and coding to the students of F1S, the students will develop the skills needed to understand and solve complex problems. Teachers will work together to train and be trained and implement the training into the classrooms.  Students will learn a variety of skills from the different robots used in the classroom.

      The need of Bots, Dash and Dots is to provide opportunities to students and their access to STEM and STEM related robots.  This will help support the district’s focus on STEM and robotics in the elementary schools. We want our students in F1S to be scientifically literate, curious about learning and be able to handle more complex thought processes.  Many schools in F1S have participated in the online course, Hour of Code – Introduction to programming, but cannot go further with the others parts of STEM education because of the lack of robots for their students to be creative, innovative and collaborative.  Research has shown how STEM and robotics education has increased leaders within the classroom, students becoming better communicators and how students are building on their teamwork skills. Data has been collected from the teachers at the participating schools, Greenwood, Henry Timrod, McLaurin and Wallace Gregg, the top six robots were determined and included for purchase in the grant.  There is a high demand in the current and future job markets for robotics and other technological advanced positions.

      The Bots, Dash and Dots funding will allow individual schools and classrooms the robots and coding technology to help meet the standards in information technology.  The district Instructional Technology Department will work alongside teachers and coaches to train the classroom teachers on how to use the new robots and coding technology.  The trained teachers will be able to use the Bots, Dash and Dots robots with their students and teach them at the higher level of standards than before the robots. With STEM education, the students will enjoy the time they spend with the hands-on approach to problem solving, critical thinking and group based projects.  


     


    Saturating the Curriculum with STEM

    Project Director – Judy Lee
    Co-Project Directors – Susan Rhodes, Julie Prommasit, Joy Goodsell, Nicole Scipio, Jeff Chatlosh
    West Florence High School – $38,199.97


      West Florence High School received AdvancEd STEM Certification in 2017-18.  Our commitment to STEM education compels us to continuously enhance our use of technology, fine-tuning our program of interdisciplinary and cross-curricular course work. We are creating a model that could be used by other schools within the district and beyond. At the same time, we seek to meet the needs of our students, increasing their college and career readiness by building problem solving skills, cognitive thinking, and technical skills that can be used on the SAT, ACT, ASVAB and in the workplace. We will add a STEM Professional Learning Community to coordinate collaborative lessons throughout our school and perhaps beyond its walls. This requires equipment and training outside of what is currently available, and we lack funding to make these purchases. We are seeking funding and support of community leaders to ensure all students are career or college ready as 21st  century graduates.

     


    Golden Keys to School Readiness Campaign

    Project Director – Dr. Floyd Creech
    Child Development Center at Woods Road - $41,150.00


      Florence 1 Schools will bring together community stakeholders across sectors to include educators, health care providers, and the business community to support a comprehensive school readiness policy agenda, the Golden Keys to School Readiness Campaign.  While health and early care and education efforts are often approached separately, they share a common vision – to promote the optimal development of young children and build a strong foundation for their future success in school and overall well-being. The stakeholders will collaborate to launch a communication campaign on early childhood with key messages for parents, grandparents, and the community.  School readiness encompasses all aspects of a young child’s development – social and emotional development, physical well-being and motor development, cognition and general knowledge, and language development. The Golden Keys to School Readiness Campaign will address the basic comprehensive needs of young children, as well as the interconnections of the programs and services required to meet those needs, to ensure we are maximizing the impact. The “golden keys” which children need are compared to five spokes of a wheel and children need all of the spokes of the wheel to work in harmony for optimal child development. The common messages of the campaign will be centered on the five golden keys which include; love, nutrition, movement, routines and sleep. The ultimate goal of the project is for fragile families in Florence One to benefit through resources and combined efforts of partners developed through this initiative. Partners will develop a resource for parents of young children which will serve as a referral guide for community-wide services for young children.  There will be a broader early identification of children with developmental gaps through the Universal Screening of all children, ages 2.5 to age 5. This Universal Screening initiative will be modeled after the initiative the School Readiness Committee learned about while visiting Beaufort County. Our initiative will have the same goal for the early identification of children with risk factors which may impact their readiness for school. This project will fund the cutting edge equipment for vision and hearing screening. In addition, this project will fund an event to bring partners together to further launch the Golden Keys to School Readiness Campaign. This event will provide the needed synergy across sectors with stakeholders coming together to hear a common message. Billboards, flyers, and social media will be used to take this common message on the Golden Keys to School Readiness to a broad audience to include many in the Florence area to include; parents, grandparents, educators, policy makers, and others essential in the lives of our young children. Services of our partners and current parent education programs will be strengthened and expanded through the strategies funded.

     

    Coding immersion Phase Two

    Grant Writer – Kelley Tanner (intern under David Copeland)
    Project Director – April Leroy
    Co-Project Directors – Dianna Betts, David Copeland
    Savannah Grove Elementary School - $27,279.10


      Savannah Grove Elementary School is in need of materials to enhance the coding immersion program. We would like to request funding for specific materials that are needed to impart phase two of the coding immersion cycle already taking place within our school. Kindergarten and First grade students will be utilizing Lego pieces to construct figures and engineer real life models of coding proponents. Second and Third grades will be utilizing “We-Do Kits” which allow for students to engage in 21st century learning with a specific focus on the sciences (earth, life, space, and physical) as well as mathematical and engineering practices. Fourth through sixth grade will be using EVS Mindstorm Kits. These kits will allow students to design and build robots; thus taking two dimensional drawings, designs and missions, bringing them to fruition through robotics. The procedures for implementing these components will follow an eight week cycle. For eight weeks, students engage in literacy skills by researching, analyzing, and developing presentational models to provide evidence of their coding cycle and learning objectives. Students also engage in inquiry skills by finding solutions to problems with an emphasis on mathematics, science and literacy skills. No longer are students the player; through coding and computer science proponents, they become the creators. The expected benefits and outcomes are to allow students an opportunity to engage in 21st century skills by having hands on materials in which to collaborate with students, see how technology works to enhance society, and to actively become involved in their own learning process. Students will be engaged in strategic problem solving, analytical and critical thinking, and a focus of logical reasoning.

     


    Aligning Academics – Level 2 of The Leader in Me

    Project Director – Tara Newton
    Co-Project Directors – Amy Rhodes, Ashley Dawkins, Jen Coleman, Suzette New, Amber Harrelson
    Briggs Elementary School - $12,066.27


        Upon entering Briggs Elementary School, one might hear our student leaders playing the piano, making morning and afternoon announcements and reading with younger students.  Attend an awards day or event and you will see students organizing, greeting and presenting. Students are excited, enthusiastic and self-motivated to carry out their roles and responsibilities as leaders.  At Briggs, we are teaching 21st  century life skills to a diverse population of students. We are creating a culture of student empowerment based on the idea that every child can be a leader.  Franklin Covey’s The Leader in Me is aligned with best in class content and concepts practiced by global education thought leaders. The 7 Habits will help our students learn to live a principled life while growing and developing in all areas concerning the Profile of the South Carolina Graduate.  

        We are proposing The School Foundation partner with us in our second year of implementation of The Leader In Me process, Aligning Academics.  This grant will provide our faculty and staff with professional development, online resources, and field guides to allow us to empower students to gain academic success.  Briggs Elementary School has approximately 600 students that transition into all Florence 1 Schools' middle and high schools. Our alumni become future leaders in all geographic areas of the Florence community.   

       Imagine the possibilities if our schools were filled with students who were responsible, showed initiative, were creative, knew how to set goals and meet them, who got along with people of various backgrounds and cultures and who could resolve conflicts and solve problems.  Principal Muriel Summers, of A.B. Combs Elementary, began The Leader In Me process in 2009. When she met with parents and business leaders, she asked what they wanted in their schools. What she heard reinforced what most people believe; that our schools should not merely be focused on improving test scores, but should provide opportunities for students to develop their full potential.  A.B. Combs went from a failing public school to being named the number one magnet school in the United States by following The 7 Habits. “We only get one chance to prepare children for a world none of us can possibly predict, what are we going to do with that one chance?” (Principal Muriel Summers, A.B. Combs Elementary).

        We empower children to be proactive, begin with the end in mind, put first things first, think win-win, seek first to understand, synergize and sharpen the saw.