Under the direction of President Karen Foley, the foundation awarded 26 grants worth $28,259 on March 24, 2020. The grants will support teaching and learning for more than 6,233 children with disabilities and those who are at-risk from birth to age 21.
Grant title: 5-minute articulation program to support 25 students with articulation disorder/delay in grades K-7 Total awarded: $130 Tillamook County - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: Dia Norris
Grant description: This grant will fund the purchase of a 5-minute articulation program for students with speech and language disorders. The program provides children a clear, step-by-step opportunity to practice speech sounds. Because of its efficiency, students do not miss as much class time for their therapy.
Grant title: Assistive technology resources for kids of all abilities to promote early mobility, communication and literacy in early intervention Total awarded: $1,500 Washington County - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: Danielle Benjamin
Grant description: The funding for this grant will be used to purchase assistive technology equipment and supplies that can be used by NWRESD’s Early Intervention team or loaned to families in order to support early learning and development. Assistive technology enables students to participate in activities with family and peers. It also promotes the development of their mobility and communication and literacy skills.
Grant title: At-home practice kits for daily activities and community outings for early childhood students with autism Total awarded: $650 Washington County - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: Rhiannon Stout
Grant description: Children with autism often struggle with daily activities such as going to the doctor or dentist. This project will provide funding for four kits that will help families prepare and navigate going to the doctor or dentist, getting a haircut and learning to potty train. The kits will contain information and tools that will help reduce anxiety for the child.
Grant title: Audio books for middle school library Total awarded: $500 Clatsop County - Astoria School District Educator: Libby Lawrence Grant description: Astoria Middle School currently has no access to audio books for students who are interested in interacting with reading materials in an alternative way. This grant will provide self-contained audio books so that students, especially those with reading challenges such as dyslexia, are able to access current and appealing titles.
Grant title: Bal-A-Vis-X rhythmic balance, auditory and vision exercises for elementary special education students Total awarded: $960 Tillamook County - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: John Pickering
Grant description: This grant will fund equipment and instructional materials to promote brain-body integration in special education elementary-aged students. Evidence shows that movement helps the brain grow and develop, so the exercises available through this program (called Bal-A-Vis-X) will help develop rhythm, balance, hearing and vision.
Grant title: Bilingual regional context books for K-2 communication students Total awarded: $1,493 Clatsop County - Warrenton-Hammond School District Educator: Paulette Rubio
Grant description: This grant will provide funding for the educator to self-publish 16 hardcover picture books to be available in K-2 and speech classrooms as well as the library. Currently, the books students have access to show traditional careers in well-known fields. However, those fields are not representative of what is available in Clatsop County. These books will enable educators to provide language and literacy sessions that are reflective of coastal Oregon.
Grant title: Book set for emerging bilingual students Total awarded: $489 Washington County - Forest Grove School District Educator: Jacob Bustamante Grant description: This project will provide 35 copies of “The One and Only Ivan (El Único e Incomparable Ivan)” for emerging bilingual students at Echo Shaw Elementary School. Novels such as this one engage students who are traditionally not interested in the literature found in anthologies. This book will allow students to go deeper with the literature and characters in order to achieve more in language arts in English and Spanish.
Grant title: Books to support equity, technology to support students receiving special education services and teaching materials/programs to improve fluency and comprehension Total awarded: $500 Columbia County - Clatskanie School District Educator: Nicole Baldwin Grant description: This grant will provide funding to purchase relevant, interesting and appropriate books for students in fourth grade at Clatskanie Elementary School. The educator currently has three students who are receiving special education services, but those students do not have access to developmentally appropriate books.
Grant title: Child care for parent trainings on collaborative problem-solving Total awarded: $2,812 Washington County - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: Megan Wattman-Turner
Grant description: This grant will help fund child care so that parents can attend training sessions on collaborative problem-solving. This problem-solving technique will provide parents with an innovative, compassionate and evidence-based approach for understanding and working more effectively with their child’s challenging behaviors. Providing child care will eliminate the barriers for participation.
Grant title: Child care for parent training on teaching social communication Total awarded: $2,763 Washington County - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: Brenda Hancock Grant description: NWRESD’s Early Intervention and Early Childhood Special Education program offers workshops for parents of children with autism. The workshops focus specifically on providing parents with strategies for improving their child’s ability to communicate. Research shows that hands-on coaching with feedback is an effective way to teach parents. Funding from this grant will help increase parent participation by covering the cost of child care.
Grant title: Communication parent coaching night Total awarded: $300 Washington County - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: Jennifer Coffey Grant description: This grant will fund parent-coaching sessions in English and Spanish for families who have children with communication disorders. The sessions will focus on articulation coaching, which will discuss typical speech sound acquisition so parents know what sounds their children should be producing based on their age, language and development level.
Grant title: Cooking projects to promote sensory exploration Total awarded: $150 Washington County - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: Kathy Andre
Grant description: Funding for this grant will cover the cost of monthly cooking projects for students who have sensory and feeding issues. Through these lessons, children will have the opportunity to explore a variety of foods in a safe and non-threatening way. Some children in this classroom at NWRESD’s Hillsboro Early Childhood Center only have 5-6 types of foods in their eating repertoires, so this project aims to expand that number.
Grant title: Improving the physical and emotional environments of the Washington County EI-ECSE Evaluation Center so they align with the principles of trauma-informed care practices Total awarded: $800 Washington County - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: Stacy Rager
Grant description: The evaluation team at NWRESD’s Washington Service Center screened 2,000 children for special education eligibility this past year. Since traumatic experiences and adverse childhood experiences are frequent in the state of Oregon, this project seeks to make the evaluation area more welcoming to students and families who are or have experienced trauma. Using trauma-informed care principles and concepts, this grant will provide funding for welcoming signage and posters, a staff photo wall, a calming station with interactive materials for children and caregivers and a comfort/drink station for children and caregivers.
Grant title: Learning opportunities for families and community partners Total awarded: $1,500 Clatsop, Columbia and Tillamook counties - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: Jackie Bergerson
Grant description: This grant will provide training for parents of children who are receiving Early Intervention or Early Childhood Special Education from NWRESD in Clatsop, Columbia or Tillamook counties. It will also provide training for child care providers. The parent trainings will give parents an opportunity to identify challenging areas and then staff will work through those areas with the parent. Child care providers will receive training on disability awareness, how to create successful parent interactions, provide skill set training in challenge areas and increase understanding on how to modify typical preschool curriculum for students experiencing different disabilities.
Grant title: Lower Columbia Hispanic Council child care provider curriculum materials and training session Total awarded: $1,100 Clatsop County - Astoria School District Educator: Charis Martin Grant description: The Lower Columbia Hispanic Council serves Hispanic families in Clatsop County and currently provides child care during trainings. However, the child care providers often do not have educational training or supplies. Funding from this grant will provide art supplies and activities such as colored pencils, drawing materials, educational games, bilingual books and puzzles for the children to play with. It will also provide training for the child care providers so they are able to learn about lesson planning and strategies for structuring and managing the activities and lessons.
Grant title: Meaningful theater for students of all abilities addressing issues teen face every day Total awarded: $2,100 Washington County - Forest Grove School District Educator: Jill Carey
Grant description: The Unified Performers Theater Group provides students with special needs the opportunity to participate in theater. There are not any other opportunities in the Forest Grove community at this time. Funding for this project will cover the royalties.
Grant title: Men and women's beach cruiser bicycles for a work experience program for students with developmental disabilities Total awarded: $1,250 Clatsop County - Astoria School District Educator: Melissa Kinzig Utterback
Grant description: Special education students in a transition class at Astoria High School currently maintain and rent bicycles to cruise ship passengers every spring and fall. In the class, the students learn to repair bikes, keep records and provide customer service. This grant will fund the purchase of new bikes since many of the bikes they currently rent are more than 15 years old.
Grant title: Mindfulness and yoga curriculum materials for children in special education classes at Beaverton Early Childhood Center Total awarded: $1,500 Washington County - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: Kathryn Vsetecka
Grant description: This project will provide yoga mats; children’s books about yoga; yoga cards, books, audio files; Tibetan singing bowl sets; and a curriculum to support stress management, emotion regulation and resilience to preschoolers with communication or social needs and students with high behavior, communication or adaptive needs.
Grant title: Reengagement strategies and incentives for high-risk, first-generation high school students Total awarded: $1,500 Washington County - Tigard-Tualatin School District Educator: Sue Wilson Grant description: This project will provide students who have traditionally had negative experiences in school with the opportunity to participate in yoga, kickboxing and CrossFit. These experiences--which these students would not normally have access to--will build and develop a team-focused attitude, self-discipline and resilience.
Grant title: Self-regulation and social emotional learning tools and curriculum for special needs elementary students Total awarded: $775 Tillamook County - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: Robin Pickering
Grant description: Many of the students at Garibaldi Elementary School in Tillamook, Oregon, have experienced trauma, including abuse, neglect, absent parents or homelessness. As a result, they often struggle to regulate their emotions. This grant will fund a curriculum and other tools that will teach students to recognize their feelings and provide strategies for managing those emotions more successfully.
Grant title: Sensory tools for students experiencing mental health issues Total awarded: $618 Oregon - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: Jeanne Gering
Grant description: Many of the students at the Day Treatment Program in Tigard, Oregon, experience dysregulation throughout the school day. Even though the program has quiet and mindful spaces for students to access, it has a limited supply of sensory tools to promote regulation, improve focus and increase participation. This grant will fund sensory tools so that students will be able to regulate their emotions, and then return to class or group and participate in academics and therapeutic activities.
Grant title: Software license for students with alternative communication needs Total awarded: $1,000 Washington County - Hillsboro School District Educator: Dawne Yamamoto
Grant description: The life skills program at Jackson Elementary School needs additional TouchChat licenses to facilitate communication for students. This software will help students participate more during class time and during non-academic periods. By giving these students access to a communication system, they will be better equipped to engage in and attend to academic instruction (e.g. answering questions verbally or asking questions for understanding). Additionally, these communication devices will act as their voice when they interact with their peers, which will foster their relationships with others.
Grant title: Spanish books for bilingual third graders Total awarded: $503 Washington County - Forest Grove School District Educator: Leah Henriksen
Grant description: As learners in a dual-language program in the Forest Grove School District, the students are developing literacy skills in English and Spanish. It is critical they practice reading regularly in both languages. English books are much more widely available to the students than Spanish books. This grant will help create a more robust collection of Spanish books that students can read at school and at home.
Grant title: Tools for an existing garden program that feeds adjudicated boys in a residential and day treatment program Total awarded: $1,200 Oregon - Northwest Regional Education Service District Educator: Richard Schuler Grant description: Funding from this grant will be used to purchase additional equipment for a garden education program at Levi Anderson Learning Program, which serves some of Oregon’s most at-risk students. Students at Levi experience severe mental health issues such as depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Horticultural therapy has been shown to be an effective way to treat these types of conditions. Having a single row seeder and a tilther will help expand the size and productivity of the garden.
Grant title: Touch screen tablets and headphones to access the online version of Unique Learning Systems curriculum for elementary students with developmental disabilities in a self-contained special education classroom Total awarded: $1,000 Clatsop County - Astoria School District Educator: Liz Visser
Grant description: This grant will support student independence by allowing students to access their individualized Unique Learning Systems academic/life skills curriculum. The touch screen access available through tablets eliminates barriers associated with pencil and paper learning. It also introduces students to technology and online systems, which will promote their autonomy.
Grant title: Unified Champions at the Coast Total awarded: $1,166 Tillamook County - Tillamook School District Educator: Tiffany Beeler Grant description: This grant will cover the cost of uniforms and equipment for students with and without intellectual disabilities who want to participate in team sports, including basketball, volleyball and softball. Inclusive sports help all students feel welcome and provides an opportunity to become physically fit, build confidence and self-esteem and be part of a community.