The Grand Island Public Schools Foundation awards mini-grants in two rounds on an annual basis. Mini-grants are designed to fund educational opportunities for students that are not available through the school district's general budget.
*Kenneth DeFrank, Success Academy, $1,970, “Flexible Seating.” Success Academy is an alternative program that focuses on students with mental and behavior challenges. We would like to offer more flexible seating to our students, including wiggly chairs, rocking chairs, and any other non-traditional seating to help kids stay focused on their academics. This grant will benefit 91 students in grades 9-12.
*Danielle Dudo, Stephanie Finnegan, Andrew Poltack, and Katie Slattery, Newell Elementary, $850, “Traveling Along the Oregon Trail.” Students will experience the Oregon Trail in a first-hand expedition across school district property. Students will face many of the same challenges that pioneers faced from traveling hardships, illness, trading and pioneer meals. Their mission is to successfully transport their family along the trail to their final destination. (Starting at Newell Elementary, stopping at Walnut Middle School and ending at Grand Island Senior High). This grant will benefit 80 students in grades 4-5.
*Sara Robinson, Gates Elementary, $1,000, “Every Student, Every Day, A Reader!” The purpose of this grant is to provide teachers with the materials they need to design meaningful phonics lessons. The materials will guide instruction that directly aligns to the LETRS (Language Essentials for Teachers of Reading and Spelling) professional development. This grant will benefit 215 students in grades K-5.
*Jason Zelasney, Shane Campbell, and John Faxon, Jefferson Elementary, $1,000, “Jefferson Gentleman.” The Jefferson Gentlemen will be a program focused on teaching our young boys how to be our next generation gentlemen. This program will teach our boys skills to help them feel good about themselves in every setting and have the confidence to lead by example. Our goal is to lift students up and help prepare them for the road ahead. During our group time, we plan to focus on learning proper etiquette in different settings, how to dress to impress and tie a tie, how to give a proper handshake and demonstrate respect to others, and learn other characteristics of being a gentleman. This grant will benefit 50 students in grades K-5.
*Chandra Kosmicki, Jefferson Elementary, $1,870, “Stop-Motion Claymation Movie Makin’.” Remember the Gumby or the California Raisins? In this project, students will grow their skills as a 21st century learner and become engaged in stop-motion animation by creating, editing, and sharing their very own Claymation movie. This grant will benefit 400 students in grades K-5.
*Trevor Cornelius and Nancy Sutherland, Knickrehm Elementary, $900, “It Only Takes a Spark.” It can be difficult for students to transition from reading picture books to chapter books; for some students, due to fear and lack of confidence, it seems almost impossible. These obstacles can be overcome by creating an afterschool program using literacy circles, where like-ability students can gather to explore and discuss the hidden treasures found within the written word. This grant will be used to purchase sets of books from seven different genres, in four different reading levels, in order to meet our students where they are at and encourage them to grow. This grant will benefit 40 students in grades K-5.
*Janet Dobbins and Rebecca Waind, Stolley Park Elementary, $1,300, “Purposeful Play in a Kindergarten Classroom.” We are creating an environment in the kindergarten classroom whereas 'play' becomes purposeful in providing extensive opportunities for children to represent and extend their thinking through multiple modalities including, but not limited to drawing, writing, painting, movement, drama, construction, dance, technology, and discovery. Purposeful play centers will integrate standards, targets, and success criteria to naturally support learning. 'Play' will provide areas in the classroom that are ever-changing. This grant will benefit 46 students in Kindergarten.
This grant will benefit 225 students in grades K-5.
*Melissa McDonald, Shoemaker Elementary, $1,000, “Every Student, Every day, A Reader!” The purpose of this grant is to provide teachers the materials they need to design meaningful phonics lessons. The materials will support instruction that directly aligns with the LETRS (Language Essentials for Teachers of Reading and Spelling) professional development. This grant will benefit 280 students in grades K-5.
*Kevin Butters, Vicki Weseman, and Brenda Carlson, Lincoln Elementary, $1,000, “Patterns of Earth and Sky.” As fifth grade students begin the school year, they investigate what causes the daily and yearly pattern of what objects we see in the night sky. Throughout the investigations they discover how the orbits of Earth around the sun and of the moon around Earth, together with the rotation of Earth about an axis between its North and South poles, causes observable patterns. These students would greatly benefit from an end-of-unit, culminating activity that includes a trip to the University of Nebraska at Kearney Planetarium and an art activity incorporating what they have learned. Students could make connections with what they have learned, recognize many of the stars they have read about, and share in an experience which will stay with them for years to come. This grant will benefit 65 students in grade 5.
*Bianca Ayala, Howard Elementary, $250, “Books & Braids.” Books & Braids is a morning weekly club where the students are able to read books of their choice and have their hair styled. All students (boys & girls) are welcomed and after having their hair styled leave with a big smile on their face! Having special books and hair materials for the club would engage more students to join while building their confidence at the same time! This grant will benefit 50 students in grades K-5.
*Gina Conyers and Clint Felber, Barr Middle School, $450, “Outdoor Leisure Activities.” We would love to offer a unit at the beginning and end of every school year that features yard games that our students will most likely play in their neighborhoods, tailgating, or while camping with family and friends in the summer like: Ladder golf, Polish Horseshoes, Corn Hole, Yard Darts and Kan Jam. This is a great unit to add to our curriculum as it is able to help us hit several standards. They will also be developing skills and knowledge of games that they will be able to participate in for a lifetime of fun. This grant will benefit 750 students in grades 6-8.
*Nicole LeClaire, Wyandotte Learning Center, $2,000, “Building a 21st Century Crime Lab – Law and Public Safety Academy at the Academies of Grand Island Senior High.” This grant will design and build a crime lab where Law and Public Safety students would be able to role-play future careers in the fields of Law and Public Safety through crime scene simulations. The crime lab would be dynamic-scenes, simulations, and events would change and build upon unit concepts. This grant would offset the cost of supplies to build set scenes and supplemental lesson materials. This grant will benefit 125 students in grades 9-12.
*Jerome Dubas, Grand Island Senior High, $1,146, “UNDRground Contemporary Arts Marketing.” The Senior High Art Department collaborates with the Azteca Market to operate a professional art gallery- UNDRground Contemporary Arts. The operating expenses include postcard mailings, postage, and vinyl, insurance, transportation expenses, food for receptions, website hosting fees, pedestals, and other miscellaneous expenses (light bulbs, paint, cleaning supplies, hardware, etc.). Every two months we have a new show and we use the postcards to market each of the art shows, and we apply vinyl to the entry foyer wall with the artist's name and the name of the show. This grant will benefit 45 students in grades 9-12.
*Corey Farlee, Shaun Willey and Maggie Mintken, Grand Island Senior High, $250, “Journals & Paper Planners for Freshman Academy.” Working as a counselor in the Freshman Academy at Grand Island Senior High we have learned that our freshmen need help with organization and dealing with emotions. We have found success using journaling strategies to manage feelings and maintain mental health with many students. We have also observed student's organization skills and grades improve by using paper planners to help them gain control of their workload, which can be overwhelming for freshman. The transition from middle school to high school can be troubling, so having these materials to assist our students with this transition would be helpful. This grant will benefit 100 students in grade 9.
*Nancy Jones, Grand Island Senior High, $559, “TeamMates Lego Project.” As a school-based mentoring program, TeamMates of Grand Island's main goal is to build positive, trusting relationships between students and mentors through weekly conversations and activities. These conversations are the basis for constructive, critical life decisions that students choose to discuss with their mentor, but can often be difficult when new relationships are developing. Having a physical focus in their hands, helps students to openly talk about themselves and their lives without feeling interviewed or interrogated. TeamMates would like to purchase Legos sets for the four TeamMates schools in the district; Barr, Walnut, Westridge and Senior High. This grant will benefit 130 students in grades 6-12.
Back on September 9th police responded to 3021 S. Locust Street in reference to the discovery two deceased persons in a room. That investigation has concluded that the cause of death of both persons was accidental overdose of methamphetamine.
Autopsies were performed on deceased 38 year old Joshua Perkins and 37 year old Shannon
Sybert. Both results concluded that ‘Acute Methamphetamine Toxicity’ to be the cause of death.
Combined with the physical evidence and a thorough investigation, the Grand Island Police
Department is closing this case having found that accidental overdose was the cause of death
for both parties.
The police stressed in the release that if someone you care about is suffering from addiction, please seek help from community resources such as the Central Nebraska Council on Alcoholism and Addiction (CNCAA) at 308-385-5520
Authorities say a South Dakota man died after collision on Interstate 80 in south-central Nebraska.
The crash occurred around 4 p.m. Sunday near the U.S. Highway 281 junction at Grand Island. The Hall County Sheriff's Department says a semitrailer and two passenger vehicles were involved.
The name of the victim and other details about the collision have not been released.
According to the Grand Island City Council Agenda Mayor Roger G. Steele has submitted the name of Justin Scott for appointment as Councilmember to represent Ward 5.
This vacancy was created when Councilmember Michelle Fitzke moved from the district.
Scott's appointment is pending council approval Tuesday night.
Nebraska officials say the body of a duck hunter who was thrown into a lake when his boat capsized has been recovered.
The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission says conservation officers and rescue divers found the body of 21-year-old Anthony Dush, of Saint Paul, in Sherman County Reservoir around 9 p.m. Friday.
Dush and another hunter were on a duck hunt traveling across the lake in a boat Friday when it capsized, throwing both into the water. The other hunter swam to a nearby cabin and called for help.
Dush was a member of the St. Paul volunteer fire department, an investigation of the incident is ongoing.
Coming up at next Tuesday’s Grand Island City Council meeting Mayor Roger Steele is expected to name a replacement for the vacant Ward 5 seat.
Councilwoman Michelle Fitzke announced her resignation in August after her and her husband purchased a home outside Ward 5.
Four candidates have applied for the position and have been interviewed by Mayor Steele and council members