no avatar

Fisher-Titus awards area schools almost $27,000 in education grants

Joe Centers • Jan 18, 2013 at 12:48 PM

More than 400 South Central Elementary School students kindergarten through sixth-grade got their motors running when COSI (Center of Science and Industry) brought its traveling program, The Incredible Human Machine, to the elementary school gymnasium in fall 2012.

(NOTE - Click HERE to see pictures of the event.)

This innovative, interactive program is designed to stimulate the imaginations of students by comparing the inner working of the human body to an engine. Funding for South Central's COSI On Wheels program was made possible through Fisher-Titus Medical Center's 2012 Health Education Grant Program.

"We have been receiving these grants since the program started in 1996 and it allows us to do programs such as COSI On Wheels that we might not be able to do otherwise," said Bryan Oney, a science teacher at South Central Middle School. "Especially in today's economy, we are thankful to have this grant to bring interactive, fun curriculum to our students."

This is just one example of how Fisher-Titus Medical Center's Health Education Grants were used in 2012. Nine local school districts were better able to achieve goals and make math, science and health education fun for their students.

Fisher-Titus Medical Center's Health Education Grant Distribution Program was established to fund innovative educational programs in the areas of math, science and health for schools in the Fisher-Titus service area.

"Each year we are pleased with the ways in which the school districts utilize their money," said Patrick J. Martin, Fisher-Titus president.

Since 1996, 157 grants have been awarded through this program. Every year, Fisher-Titus awards local school districts health education grants. During a luncheon ceremony Thursday, Jan. 17 at Fisher-Titus Medical Center, the Medical Center awarded this year's grants to 9 local school districts, totaling $26,880.

More than $714,800 has been distributed in the 17 years the program has been in existence, according to Virginia Poling of Fisher-Titus Medical Center's Board of Directors.

"Fisher-Titus Medical Center's vision is 'to enhance the safety and quality of life of each person we serve' and our board, medical staff and employees believe that enhancing the educational foundation of our schools makes the entire region a better place to live, work and worship, " Poling said.

This year $26,880 was distributed to Berlin-Milan Local Schools, Monroeville Local Schools, New London Local Schools, Norwalk City Schools, Norwalk Catholic School, South Central Local Schools, Wellington Local Schools, Western Reserve Local Schools and Willard City Schools.

Applicants were required to submit a grant proposal to Fisher-Titus that included a detailed explanation of the project to be funded. Grants were approved by the Fisher-Titus Medical Center board of directors. Under this program, school districts may receive grants up to $3,000.

During the luncheon, each recipient presented a brief summary of the program last year's grant funded.

Edison Local Schools

The Healthy Choices for Healthy Children Act (Senate Bill 210) was signed into law in June 2010, and the law directs the Ohio Department of Education to issue an annual report on the compliance of school districts in four areas which will make up a report card indicator. The four areas of measurement are:

Student success in meeting the benchmarks contained in the Ohio Department of Education Physical Education Academic Content Standards.

Compliance with federal requirements for local wellness policies.

Whether the district or building is complying with the act's BMI screening requirements.

Whether the district or building is participating in the act's physical activity pilot program.

Beginning with the 2012-13 school year, a physical education evaluation will be included as an indicator on the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) Local Report Card. On September 5, 2012, ODE released data sheet information to Ohio school districts on the new report card indicator. Immediately following the template release, our curriculum department created sets of K-12 grade-level data collection sheets. Upon completion, the district physical education teachers immediately administered a state-level evaluation of student fitness in their classes. The data collected will be electronically submitted throughout the year to ODE for inclusion as an indicator in the 2012-13 district and building Local Report Cards.

Edison Local Schools is seeking $3,000 in grant funding to purchase software to help our district remain compliant in all program areas outlined in SB 210. It is our district's intent to utilize Fitnessgram 9 as an educational tool which will allow us to perform effective fitness and physical activity assessment on students, provide appropriate feedback to both students and parents, and maintain accurate and comprehensive records over time. The President's Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition adopted Fitnessgram 9 because the program promotes health and physical activity for America's youth.

Monroeville Local Schools

The 2012 Monroeville Local School District proposal for grant funding by Fisher-Titus Medical Center is a request for technology that will directly support science and mathematics concepts from elementary to high school. Five iPads and four document cameras will be purchased and used regularly to enhance instruction in the fields of science, math, health and other related subjects.

To purchase the iPads and document cameras, Monroeville Local Schools is requesting $3,000. The additional costs required for implementing the project will be assumed by the school district.

The school district expects to experience positive results in the area of student growth as it implements the classroom use of the technological tools. The International Society for Technology in Education confirms this in a brief entitled Technology and Student Achievement -- The Indelible Link, where it indicates that educational technology has a positive effect on student learning. In summary, the brief states:

The research findings presented in this brief demonstrate that technology is being effectively integrated into teaching and learning and is having a positive impact on increasing student achievement through test scores and the acquisition of 21st century skills. This research presents convincing evidence that technology integration in teaching and learning is having a strong positive effect on student achievement across all segments of K-12 students, is helping to advance equity and access in historically high need schools and communities, and is fortifying today's generation with a foundation of technology based skills that fit within the larger picture of global competitiveness. (http://www.iste.org)

New London Local Schools

New London Local Schools prides itself on its dedication to student learning and preparing students for their future. In doing so, New London Local Schools had embraced and encouraged the use of technology in all content areas across the district. Science, math, and health are content areas that can specifically be impacted by increased technology usage.

Currently, many of science, math, and health classrooms have wall-mounted projectors, interactive MIMIO sticks, as well as, interactive Turning Point student response systems. The goal is to utilize grant funding from the Fisher-Titus Medical Center Health Education Grant to outfit an additional room with this technology. In doing so, New London Local Schools will extend 21st Century learning opportunities to approximately 140 students every year.

Increasing technology in the classrooms will better prepare students for college, as well as the workforce. This project will allow math, science, and health teachers to teach students how they learn best, using interactive technology. The $3,000 Fisher-Titus Medical Center Health Education Grant will help to purchase three wall-mounted, short throw projectors. The projector is equipped with a MIMIO interactive system that will allow any surface to be turned into an interactive surface. These items will allow New London High School to equip all math, science, and health classes with this technology.

Norwalk Catholic School

St. Paul High School has a strong tradition of an excellent mathematics program. Many St. Paul students go on to higher education in mathematics, science, business and medical studies. Norwalk Catholic School needs to update the calculators used with students. This is needed to meet state standards, to assure our students are prepared for higher mathematics courses and to secure success in those courses.

With the $3,000 grant St. Paul High School will purchase a classroom set of TI-Nspire color, 3D graphing calculators, teacher software, and training workbooks. These calculators will challenge teachers to redesign their curricula to incorporate the new technology into their day-to-day lessons. The teacher software provides a large virtual working calculator that works on the SmartBoard so students can see exactly what buttons to push and what should be seen on their screens. Graphing calculators are an excellent tool for helping students to understand algebra, geometry and graphing concepts in a new and powerful way.

Norwalk Catholic School is confident that the combination of new technology and improved lesson plans will lead to more success for its students.

Norwalk City Schools

In the spring of 2012, Norwalk Middle School entered into partnership with NASA's Plum Brook Station. The goal of the partnership is to give students new opportunities to develop skills in critical thinking, problem solving and independent thought. The cooperation with NASA led to the creation of a new class at Norwalk Middle School; 21st Century Skills. Students in this class are using newly purchased copies of CorelDraw X6 Graphics Suite to design items to be fabricated using EHOVE's fab-lab. These items will support a creative-tension loop between the 21st Century Skills class and students in fifth grade. In order to fully realize the potential of its NASA partnership, Norwalk City Schools need to afford students the opportunity to work with the equipment themselves. Approximately 250 students will be impacted this year. The number could increase significantly in the future. The laser would be piloted with this class and, eventually, expand its use into other courses.

The partnership with NASA requires fifth-grade students to demonstrate mastery of 10 math and science topics through assessments created by eighth-grade students in cooperation with the fifth grade teachers. A mastery token, designed by the eighth graders on CorelDraw and fabricated by a laser cutter/engraver, will be earned for each topic mastered by a fifth-grade student. Each token represents a part of a rocket or a launch. Students earning at least seven tokens will travel to NASA's Plum Brook Station in the spring for tours, lunch and a mass launch.

Norwalk Middle School is requesting $3,000 through the Fisher-Titus Medical Center Health Education Grant to offset the cost of purchasing a laser cutter/engraver. Depending on the model purchased, installation of this piece of equipment will cost $16,000 - $23,000. The majority of the funding will be paid either through discretionary funds at the Middle School or by a donation from Olympus Surgical Technologies America/Gyrus ACMI. Olympus Surgical Technologies America/Gyrus ACMI has submitted a proposal to their corporate office to cover the cost. If a laser cutter/engraver is provided by Olympus/Gyrus, the $3,000 we are requesting through this grant will be used offset the expense of a 3-D printer. The 3-D printer being recommended through our partnership with NASA is approximately $4,200.

A laser cutter/engraver is the first step toward the long-term goal of creating a fabrication laboratory (fab-lab) facility; a 3-D printer is the second step. A fab-lab is a small scale workshop that uses various machines to create both prototypes and small-scale projects. The design and fabrication capabilities of these machines will greatly increase our ability to foster within our students increased skills in critical thinking, problem solving and independent thought. A laser cutter/engraver is a sensible first piece to a fab-lab. The equipment itself is easy to use and requires little maintenance. A laser cutter/engraver works in two dimensional fabrications which serve as the foundation to more complicated, three-dimensional fabrications. Lastly, laser cutters/engravers offer a great deal of flexibility which allows the machine to be incorporated into a variety of curricular areas.

South Central Local Schools

The $3,000 allocated by this grant will be used for an elementary visit from COSI on Wheels, online resource subscriptions to BrainPop and Quiaweb and hands-on science materials and visual aids for the science and health classes in the South Central School District. The funds will be divided among various programs that enhance science and health education at South Central.

The science and health departments have aligned their course of study to the state model based on the Ohio achievement test. The departments have also scoped and sequenced the curriculum to ensure a complete coverage of all areas of science. The equipment will be used to thoroughly teach concepts important to a well-rounded education in the areas of science and health as well as areas covered by the Ohio achievement test and now, the Ohio Graduation Test. There are many topics in science and health that are better taught, understood, and retained by students through the use of hands-on activities. This equipment will help students receive a better education. Educators will be encouraged to purchase materials that can be shared by other teachers so that the funds are spent efficiently. In years past, the funds South Central received were used in the above manner and it has worked out very well. The teachers and students at each level were excited about the materials they were able to get. These additional funds seemed to invigorate and enhance instruction at all grade levels.

There are no funds available at this time that could be used to purchase this equipment for students to use. This equipment will be purchased and used in all grades for the teaching of science and health. Participants include the elementary/junior high/high school population of South Central.

Wellington School District

McCormick Middle School is requesting a grant for the sum of $2,953.66.

The purpose of this health education request is to improve the quality of life by teaching skills necessary to improve health and promote wellness of each student. This year the middle school is requesting a document camera and items for the continuation of previous units. The camera will be used with the smart board as an interactive visual for lab experiments, specimens and to display charts and reading materials. All sixth-, seventh- and eighth-grade students have health education class.

Students dissect owl pellets to map the bones and then compare them to the human skeleton. Over the years of use in the CPR unit, some of the manikins need to be replaced -- 210 students will do CPR this year. The rest of the requested items are for the heart unit. The students learn all about respiration, circulation and how to take blood pressures with blood pressure cuffs. They follow this with CPR and nutrition for a healthy heart.

All items will be used by the health education program at McCormick Middle School. There are 287 students going through the program.

Western Reserve Local School District

Western Reserve High School and Middle school are in a collaborative effort to improve the science curriculum with the use of accurate hands-on science models. These models will cost a total of $2,926.35. Through the use of detailed models the schools are able to expand curriculum and allow students to have hands-on experiences examining relationships among all body structures. The students will use the lifelike models to explore three-dimensional anatomy, enhancing their knowledge of the human body.

These materials help meet the educational goals of the Western Reserve continuous improvement plan and the goals of state benchmarks. Students will develop skills and knowledge to improve our science scores and develop skills that will prepare students to make decisions about careers.

Willard City Schools

Willard City Schools is requesting $3,000 for eight high school compound microscopes. The use of high quality microscopes in the biology classroom is essential. For many students, this will be their only exposure to the microscopic world. Being able to use real scientific tools, such as the microscope, give students "hands on" experiences that are useful frameworks upon which to build knowledge.

The microscopic world is a hidden treasure and new, quality microscopes will allow Willard High School to open this world to students. Willard calls its labs: Unlocking the Mysteries of the Hidden World!

Recommended for You

    Norwalk Reflector Videos