Lafayette, LA (KPEL News) - Fifteen schools in Lafayette Parish, Louisiana, have been awarded grants to fund innovative education programs for their students. The United Way of Acadiana named the recipients of the more than $64,000 in grants for the 2023-2024 school year.

United Way grants
Courtesy United Way of Acadiana

The Education Innovation Grants, according to United Way, are designed to:

empower educators by providing them with the necessary resources, tools, and opportunities to elevate their teaching practices and enhance the overall classroom experience.

In 2021 the Lafayette Education Foundation merged with United Way, and they have continued offering funding to support teachers who motivate students to academic excellence.

Lafayette Parish teachers, librarians, or guidance counselors who are working directly with the instruction of students are invited to apply.

Funding amounts vary depending on how the application is written.

● $1,000 - Individual teachers

● $5,000 - Shared grants submitted by two or more teachers, either within a school or between schools. (Please note that shared grants must directly impact more than one class of students to be eligible.)

● Grants that aim to support innovative projects that have the potential to make a lasting impact on the entire school can be submitted requesting up to $50,000.

Applications for the current school year were accepted through October 13, and the following schools are receiving grants. You'll find a description of each program in the pictures, as well.

  • This Mustang Is No Joke – W.D. & Mary Baker Smith Career Center
  • Breathe and Move at Woodvale – Woodvale Elementary School
  • Breathe and Move at Burke – Charles M. Burke Elementary School
  • Reading Rams: A School-Wide Approach to Improving Literacy – Edgar Martin Middle School
  • The American Dream Starts Here – Lafayette Middle School
  • Pelican Book Vending Machine – L. Leo Judice Elementary
  • Show Your Work! - Carencro Bob Lilly Elementary
  • The Art of Abstraction – Edgar Martin Middle School Gifted Enrichment Program
  • Evangeline French Festival – Evangeline Elementary School
  • Reading Rocks in Kindergarten! – Woodvale Elementary
  • Promoting Mindfulness through Picture Books and Art – Carencro High School Library
  • SWAMPS (Sharing Wetlands, Art, Mentorship, & Phenomenon with Students) – Charles M. Burke Elementary
  • Butterfly Gardens and School Beautification Project – Northside High School
  • Spring Musical Set Design and Construction – Southside High School
UW Education Grants 1
Courtesy United Way of Acadiana
UW Education Grants 2
Courtesy United Way of Acadiana

United Way of Acadiana facilitates several programs that support education. Babies and toddlers within the service area are invited to sign up for Dolly Parton's Imagination Library. Schools implement the Leader in Me program to develop leadership skills through their daily activities. Their Early Head Start Program provides early childhood education at no cost through a center-based model. The Education Innovation Grants and other similar programs offer support to teachers and education professionals.

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