By Maggie Kenworthy
MENTONE — During the Tippecanoe Valley School Board meeting held tonight, Sept. 21, the board accepted $439,500 worth of grants for various purposes.
Lori Tilden-Geiger. director of marketing, public relations and grant writing presented the three grants to the board. The school corporation received a $35,500 Indiana Department of Education’s Digital Learning Capacity Grant, a $100,000 Indiana Department of Homeland Security Secured Safety Grant and a $304,000 Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Grant.
“It was a good month for grants,” summarized Tilden-Geiger.
The Indiana Department of Education’s Digital Learning Capacity Grant was a competitive grant in recognition of the immediate need for school corporations to deliver digital learning. Tippecanoe Valley sent out a survey to teachers before applying for the grant to see how many teachers were interested. 15% of teachers expressed interest so they will participate in competency-based learning via micro-credentials. This will prepare the interested teachers in providing digital learning, whether it be in-person or remote.
The Indiana Department of Homeland Security Secured Safety Grant is a competitive and matching grant. $30,000 of this grant will be used to have a professional school threat assessment for all of the school’s buildings. This comprehensive report will show which areas of security the school corporation needs to work on. The other $70,000 will be used to update security equipment and technology.
The Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Grant was a needs-based and competitive grant to support school corporations with remote learning. TVSC was granted $264,000 to be used for devices, which will move the high school’s devices ahead of the current replacement schedule. The remaining $40,000 will be put towards community internet connectivity.
The board also accepted a variety of donations during the meeting.
These donations included various Amazon for Kosciusko County donations, a $591 donation from Donors Choose for STEM kits, a $334 donation from Donors Choose for two drones, a $475 donation from Donors Choose for incentive items, a $200 donation from the Akron Las Donas Club for nursing supplies, a $250 donation from the Mentone Alumni Association for student activities and a $300 worth of lumber donation from Darren Parker for the Industrial Tech, Agriculture and Project Lead The Way departments.
The next regular school board meeting will be held on Monday, Oct. 12. This is a week earlier than usual to accommodate for Fall Break.
In other news, the board:
- Approved the hiring of Aaron Butcher, athletic director for TVHS; Erica Ramirez, instructional assistant at Mentone Elementary; and Austin Bucher, cook at TVHS.
- Accepted the resignation of Peggy McQuinn, instructional assistant at TVMS; Rebecca Murphy, instructional assistant at Mentone Elementary; Alyssa Warner, instructional assistant at Mentone Elementary; Krista Neace, instructional assistant at Mentone Elementary; Maryna Bodrie, cook at Mentone Elementary; and Melinda Kruger, custodian at TVHS.
- Approved overnight field trips for the FFA State Soils Judging Contest and the FFA Livestock Skil-A-Thon Contest.
- Held a public budget hearing, but no questions or comments were made.