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13 Oct – Local schools receive Lambertville Area Education Foundation Awards

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Local schools receive Lambertville Area Education Foundation Awards

At its June meeting, the board of the Lambertville Area Education Foundation (LAEF) approved new grants for all four of the schools it serves.

The board awarded $1,000 to Lambertville Public School in response to a grant request submitted by teacher Janet Nocar. The grant funds a second year of the Gravity Hill Farm and SuperKids Wellness Program, which introduces third-graders to the production, cooking, and consumption of organic vegetables from Lambertville’s Gravity Hill Farm. The grant also covers anatomy lessons by Dr. Kellyann Petrucci, demonstrations of wool production by Robin Perelli of Shelterwood Farm, and lessons about healthy eating.

The LAEF board awarded $6,466 to West Amwell School for computers, iPads and associated equipment for the school’s resource room. The grant proposal, written by teachers Harriet Webster and Maureen Montgomery, will serve students in grades K through 6 with varying degrees of special needs. In this case, the board of education has authorized expenditure of an equal amount to fund the project.

West Amwell School also shared a $2,800 Architecture Workshops grant with Stockton School, awarded as the result of a proposal from Stockton Superintendent Suzanne Ivans and West Amwell Principal Debby Sarmir on behalf of all the classroom teachers in the two schools. The grant funds four days of hands-on architecture workshops, in which students from all grades study architectural principles and build simple structures. Lambertville School has received a similar grant in the past.

Finally, the LAEF board approved a Mobile STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) Education grant of $14,318 to South Hunterdon High School. The grant, in response to a proposal from biology teacher Scott Ward, will, in his words, “change the way biology will be experienced by South students.” The grant funds purchase of mini iPads, Vernier’s BioChamber 2000s, Vernier LabQuest 2 standalone interfaces (used to collect sensor data), and Graphical Analysis for iPad apps.

LAEF Board President Jill Myers expressed pride in the grants. “This is what the LAEF is here for,” she says, “to enable our schools to try new things that they may not have risked — or been able to afford — on their own. If the innovation succeeds, we expect the school boards to use their own funds to expand the project, while the LAEF continues to look for grant proposals featuring new, exciting ideas.”

In other action, the LAEF board voted to encourage local residents to vote in the special election on Sept. 24, 2013, relating to consolidation of the four school districts it serves. Board President Jill Myers said, “The board has no position on the ballot questions themselves, but we feel strongly that people should get out and vote on this topic that will have such a large impact on the future of education in our area.”

The LAEF, founded in 1992, is a non-profit, volunteer-run organization dedicated to benefiting students attending Lambertville Public School, West Amwell Township School, Stockton Borough School, and South Hunterdon Regional High School. The organization’s mission is to raise funds and broker community support for projects that enrich the educational experience of students in the four schools; virtually 100 percent of the Foundation’s income is expended in grants for that purpose. More information is available at