Impact Grants August 2015

August 2015
By Erich Thurow, Chairman D200 Education Foundation
The school year has started. For the last few weeks parents and students have been getting ready
for new learning opportunities and doing the back-to-school shopping, and preparations needed to
be successful in the 2015-16 school year. August marks the beginning of a year’s worth of activity
compressed into seven months for the District 200 Education Foundation.
The Education Foundation Board met twice this summer and has set the wheels in motion for
another busy year of spending the money we raised last February and preparing for our gala
fundraiser this winter so the process will live on. Each fall the Foundation accepts applications for
Impact Grants. These applications are submitted by District 200 teachers; teachers request funds
for a wide variety of projects and the Foundation provides the means. These projects are not
funded by the school district, but add to the rich educational experiences our teachers provide for
our students.
In the past year this column has featured some of the 80 plus projects we funded last year and in
the fall we’ll start that process again featuring projects that will be selected and awarded in
October. The deadline for grant applications is September 9. After that, a committee of Foundation
Board members will read the more than 100 applications we receive and make recommendations
for funding to the full Foundation Board.
The Foundation announces the award recipients at our annual awards program in mid October and
the funds begin flowing from our bank account to the students of District 200. Each year we
distribute close to $25,000 in funds for the projects we support. Some are small requests (as little
as $75) and some as much as $1,000. Our average grant is about $425 and we generally award
funds to every school in the district.
As soon as that process is completed, the Foundation turns its focus to awarding the Sue Palmore
Award of Excellence and the Groundhog Day fundraiser event. The Palmore award is given each
year to someone in the community who has shown exemplary service to the students of District
200. There is more information on our website ( about the grants and the
Palmore award. I encourage you to check that out and think about nominating someone for this
year’s award.
We are exited about this year’s annual fundraiser dinner. We are moving to a new venue this year.
Our event will be held February 6 at the historic Starline Factory in Harvard. We are looking
forward to our Mardi Gras event which includes a dinner, entertainment and both live and silent
auctions. It’s always great fun and helps us earn funds for the following year’s grants. We
encourage you to “Save the Date” and check back later for details on the event. We are looking for
sponsors for the event this year. If you or your company would be interested in being a major
contributor to our event, please contact me at Enjoy the school year!