Stillwater News Press

Local News

September 19, 2012

Donors can see dollars in action at Stillwater foundation gala

STILLWATER, Okla. — Students in Larry Hesler’s advanced placement statistics class at Stillwater High School calculate “p-value from an ANOVA, which indicates if three different data sets are equal statistically.”

In order to calculate that statistical measure, students require the use of a Texas Instruments Nspire CX graphing calculator.

That tool of advanced technology would not be available to students without a $2,150 grant proposal written by Hesler and approved last February by the Stillwater Public Education Foundation.

The foundation will have a fall fundraiser from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday at the ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center. Stillwater Superintendent Ann Caine will speak, as will new Oklahoma State University baseball coach Josh Holliday, a graduate of Stillwater Public Schools. The Stillwater Pioneer Chorale and Stillwater Orchestra Quartet will perform. Tickets are $125 per person.

“This is a great opportunity to showcase our grants,” SPEF Executive Director Jenifer Bartley said. “We will show a video, which will have footage of grants in action, students using the material in the classroom. It’s a great opportunity for donors to see where their dollars are going.”

Bartley said grants are awarded for as little as $100 to as much as $4,000. She said the average grant fund for the school year ranges from $20,000 to $30,000.

Bartley said the SPEF typically receives 10 to 30 grant applications each semester, and the number approved varies. In the last grant cycle in February, nine grant applications totaling $12,890 were approved.

Grant applications are still be accepted for the fall semester. The deadline to submit an application is Monday.

“SPEF is vitally important to our school system,” said Kellee Brown, public information officer for the district. “We are very appreciative of the impressive fundraising efforts of this irreplaceable organization. The generous contributions of our local citizens and patrons is appreciated in this time of economic uncertainty.”

The SPEF includes 22 volunteers and eight members who serve on the allocations committee.

Bartley said the allocations committee evaluates grant applications on several criteria.

“How innovative is their idea? Does it impact a lot of students? Can it be used in multiple grades, multiple subjects?” said Bartley.

Since 1984, the SPEF has awarded $750,000 in grants, said Bartley.

Bartley said as many as 200 people are expected to attend the gala. Reservations are still open. As of Monday afternoon, there were 130 people registered to attend.

For more information about the SPEF, go to spef@stillwaterschools.com.

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