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$20,000 in Grants Given to Teachers

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EUGENE, Ore. — The holiday came a couple days early for a group of teachers in Eugene Thursday, who got a big boost in their budgets.

Nearly $20,000 are going directly toward the education of kids in our community.

Donna Butler is just one of 22 teachers who received a giant check from the Bethel Education Foundation. Teachers submitted grant proposals earlier this year for extra educational tools that just don’t fit into the budget. Butler now has nearly $1,200 to spend on iPads to help her first graders learn math.

“We don’t have any extra help in math. This may be a way to do it. Right here. So, it’s going to be fun trying it out,” Butler said.

Charissa Nelson got two grants totaling $900.

“Being able to have access to tools that really enhance and enrich our educational experience just means a great, great deal,” Nelson said.

She’s planning on using some of the funds for simple science experiments and binoculars for studying wildlife.

“When you do it for 30 kids, it starts to add up,” Nelson said. “Without the money, we wouldn’t have these opportunities.”

The Bethel Education Foundation started just four years ago, and they’ve already made a big impact.

“We saw the need in the community, and we’re raised over $90,000 to be able to put back right in the classroom. And being able to do that on a local level is, I think, just really valuable and makes such a difference for our kids,” said Brooke Cottle, President of the Bethel Education Foundation.

“Before they were here, we just either paid for it ourselves or went without and…on behalf of all the teachers I just want to say thank you to the community and to the BEF members for helping us out,” Nelson said.

To explain what an accomplishment this is, students are going home with a flyer that explains to parents exactly how the grant works.

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