Schools Foundation promotes humanities for students this year

Published 3:40 pm Friday, August 16, 2019

The Decatur County Schools Foundation celebrated 23 years of awarding students and teachers for academic excellence this past year.

This year, they hope to continue fostering education outside the classroom and helping students enrich their lives through artistic and cultural experiences.

The purpose of the foundation is to promote and reward academic excellence. It is the hope of the foundation that those students who are recognized and involved in the program will benefit by forming feelings of increased self-worth and self-confidence as well as being motivated to achieve their fullest potential.

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Teachers apply for the grant with an application obtained from the Superintendent. Upon completion, it is sent to the foundation’s board for review and approval. The grant can be for sponsorship of academic and arts activities that are not normally funded from regular school funds, tax dollars or fundraising activities. This can range from individual classes, clubs or even students who have gone above and beyond academically. The money can then be used for field trips, art projects or rewards. It is not used for athletics, though.

The hope is that the money provides things that students would otherwise not experience, foundation president Scott Ewing said.

Some of the activities sponsored have been bringing plays to schools by the Atlantic Coast Theatre Group to expand experience in the fine arts, field trips to Chehaw State Park, Flint River Aquarium and the Gulf Specimen Mobile Marine Lab. They additionally sponsor honor events at the end of the year for those who have attained academic excellence throughout the school year.

Ewing hopes this year to raise awareness about the foundation in the community.

To date, the foundation has funded 381 grants totaling $323,484,46 and has academically assisted 101, 623 students.

When the foundation was founded, there was an endowment established. Along with that, teachers deduct some of their payroll and give it to the foundation and private donors give as well. However, donations are still needed so students can continue to gain experiences and have additional learning opportunities.

Ewing explained that the foundation is a 501C3, so any donations made are tax deductible for individuals or businesses.

Anyone who is interested in donating can do so at First Port City Bank and can talk with Ewing more about the goals set out by the foundation.