Park Elementary School is a Title I, inner-city school in Baton Rouge, LA that recently conducted a needs assessment focused on uncovering opportunities for improvement in their children’s academic environment. Through this process, the school’s administration and educators discovered that many of their students had not been outside the 5 block radius of the Park campus.
In an effort to expand the minds of their students and provide them access to new concepts and educational strategies, the staff selected arts as the tool to reach and expand the horizons of their students. With the help of the Community Cash for Schools®
program, Park Elementary earned over $6,000 to be used toward their chosen initiatives and projects.
With the money Park earned, the school was able to fund field trips to the LSU Museum of Art once a month. Second graders are able to learn from the current and past artists, view the latest featured art exhibits and create their own art based on what they learned at the museum. It is a hands-on learning experience in a setting that the children may not have access to otherwise.
Park administration also utilized the fund to create a program called Manners of the Heart. This program teaches students across all grade levels proper manners and good character traits. When proper manners and good character traits are demonstrated a student receives a bracelet that says, "Park Cubs have manners!"
This innovative programs are helping to evolve the learning environment at Park Elementary. The school is now an A+ School for Arts Integration and Project Based
Learning. With project based learning, each grade level has a theme, which is extended throughout the curriculum allowing each student to take part in real world projects and learning activities. The themes include the world, media, arts, environment, economy and health.
Park Elementary was just one of 833 schools that participated in the Community Cash for Schools®
program. Schools have earned more than $6.4 million in funding since the program began 27 years ago. Last year alone, 91 schools who participated in the Community Cash for Schools®
program earned over $1,000.
In addition to the programmatic changes Park Elementary staff and administration was able to make with support from the Community Cash for Schools® funds, they were also able to purchase various school supplies and equipment needed for the start of the new school year. No one knows what your school needs more than your school. That is why the money earned is used at the discretion of the schools. If you know a school that could utilize more funding, please encourage them to sign-up at CommunityCoffee.com/CashforSchools
. It’s a great way to ensure our future generations has the resources they need to succeed.