Around F.C.

FCEF Announces Inaugural ‘Super Grants’

Henderson Principal Seidah Ashashaheed, technology instructor Susan Jinks, librarian Lori Fogle and assistant principal Ty Harris stand together after the announcement of a $20,000 grant being awarded to the school for a Makerspace. (Photo: Courtesy of the Falls Church Education Foundation)
Henderson Principal Seidah Ashashaheed, technology instructor Susan Jinks, librarian Lori Fogle and assistant principal Ty Harris stand together after the announcement of a $20,000 grant being awarded to the school for a Makerspace. (Photo: Courtesy of the Falls Church Education Foundation)

The Falls Church Education Foundation announced their first ever batch of Super Grant winners late last week, surprising three groups of teachers at Mary Ellen Henderson Middle School and George Mason High School with grants of over $10,000. Last week, the local educational foundation announced that they were awarding nearly $45,000 in grants to local schools. Super grants are intended to be large sources of funding for innovative ideas that take Falls Church City public schools to a higher level in a specific subject area.

At Henderson, Susan Jinks and Lori Fogle, a technology instructor and librarian, respectively, won a $20,000 grant for a Makerspace, which will be the first of its kind in a Northern Virginia middle school. The space, designed to create opportunities for hands-on learning, is intended to be a create a place where students and teachers can gather to create, invent and learn together.

The other two big grants were awarded to groups of teachers at Mason. Science teacher Peter Mecca, special education teacher Jamie Lahy and food services supervisor Richard Kane won a $16,000 grant for Grow and Market, a pilot program for Mason students to grow and ‘market’ high quality specialty crops to the high school’s food service program.

Mary Jo West, John Ballou, Marc Robarge, Maria Shields, Lauren Carpel and Shawn Northrip of Mason’s Visual and Performing Arts department won a $11,929 grant for Sound Choices, which will allow the department to purchase new audio and lighting control equipment.