FSAS Grants Three New Grants To Saline


Saline Area Schools is enjoying three new grants provided by the Foundation for Saline Area Schools, totaling $4,073.

“The Foundation for Saline Area Schools is one of the most important partners that we have to allow our teaching staff to really come up with additional activities, curriculum, events, programming to better serve our students and these are three examples,” Superintendent Steve Laatsch said.

Young students learn best by doing rather than sitting at a desk and taking in a lecture, Laatsch said. The superintendent said that was why he liked the $1,473 grant to create a “dramatic play learning space for young fives” at Woodland Meadows.

“We awarded at our board meeting three additional grants. One was called Dramatic Play Learning Space for Young Fives,” FSAS Executive Director Annherst Kreitz said. “The project includes a child sized all in one kitchen; multicultural play food, pots, pans, and storage for extra plays and dramatic play.”

This kitchen-like space utilizes active participation to teach in a way that feels a lot more like playing than learning. This program is intended to help young students learn about new places and allows for the district to reinforce “social and emotional learning,” Kreitz added.

The other two grants will benefit Saline High School. The life skills program has received a $1,100 grant for its Let’s Get Drummin’ program, which, according to Kreitz, allows “ALL students, regardless of ability, are able to enjoy music and beat to any tune! Many of our students find music very therapeutic, and cardio drumming is a perfect way to stay physically active while enjoying the rhythm and having fun with one another.” In addition to assisting in education, the program is there to allow students to reduce stress, express themselves and help students who need it develop their motor skills and sensory needs, Kreitz added.

The largest grant is a $1,500 package to further student understanding of cultural and environmental issues with the Ecuadorian and Malian Partnership with the Tandana Foundation, non-profit assisting in community support, education, health, income generation, water resources and food resources for communities in both Ecuador and Mali, according to their website.

“Cardio drumming is to make sure our life skills students are moving [and] active [because] research shows that a lot of activity while learning helps stimulate brain activity and can lead to deeper learning,” Laatsch added. “The Ecuadorian project is to make sure that our kids are connected as global citizens; so they are able to connect with others in different cultures.”

The FSAS says that they have awarded over $100,000 in grants to SAS this school year. Kreitz says that the foundation has $17,769 remaining for further grants this spring. 

Image Credit: Scot Graden, former superintendent of Saline Area Schools.

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