Foundation awards grants, receives $10,000 donation from DFCU

From AAPSNews Service
and the AAPS Educational Foundation

The Ann Arbor Public Schools Educational Foundation has awarded $22,000 in grants to the Ann Arbor Public Schools through its Initiatives for Excellence and Great Idea Teacher Grant programs. The awards are in addition to approximately $275,000 allocated earlier this year.

AAPS Educational Foundation logoAlso this week, the Foundation accepted a $10,000 check from DFCU Financial for its 2011 One Million Reasons campaign as the credit union expands into the Ann Arbor area. Proceeds from the campaign will be directed to the Ann Arbor Public Schools’ 2011-12 academic year; the fundraising campaign was launched earlier this month.

Two middle school programs and one high school program have received Initiatives for Excellence Grants. Every sixth-grade student in the district will benefit from an $8,400 grant to Project Healthy Schools, which began in 2005 as collaboration between the University of Michigan Health System and the Ann Arbor Public Schools to reduce childhood obesity. The foundation is funding equipment used in a series of 10 interactive health lessons.

Students in grades 6-12 will benefit from a $9,090 grant that will supply every middle school and high school with document cameras, which will support laboratory and hands on activities in the classrooms.

Teacher grants will impact 3,000 students at 7 schools

The spring Great Idea Grants to staff award cycle awarded seven projects at seven schools a total of $4,548. The grants impact more than 3,000 students.

Projects include: a forensics study at Skyline High School; a reading initiative for teens at Community High School; additions to the book collection at Eberwhite Elementary School’s library; a band tour for Tappan Middle School students; Scarlett transition boot camp; and support of a summer learning program at Pattengill Elementary School.

AAPSEF Great Idea Grant awards are competitive and the maximum amount of funding given per project is $1,000. A nine-member volunteer team serves as the grants review committee, including members of AAPSEF’ s board, community members and retired AAPS staff. Several projects received funding at the maximum amount. Grants were awarded from kindergarten through high school levels. For more information, visit the AAPSEF website (

This is the 14th year that the Ann Arbor Public Schools Educational Foundation has awarded grants to staff. In addition to the large-scale grants awarded to the district, the Great Idea Grants awards allow support on the classroom level.

Large donation accepted from DFCU Financial

DFCU donates $10,000 to ed foundation
DFCU Financial donated $10,000 to the AAPS Educational Foundation on March 16. Pictured from left, are AAPSEF Executive Director Wendy Correll, DFCU President and CEO Mark Shobe and AAPS Interim Superintendent Robert Allen during a reception at the DFCU branch on Green Road in Ann Arbor.

Checks were presented at a reception at DFCU Financial’s Green Road office in Ann Arbor and AAPSEF Executive Director Wendy Correll accepted the check on behalf of the board of directors.

Correll said the DFCU’s business model of focus on individual members ties nicely into the foundation’s focus on serving every child. “It’s a great model for us,” she said. “I think it’s clear to say, between these two educational systems here today that their mission is to stay focused on educating the students in their community and partnering with businesses in their community.”

Mark Shobe, president and CEO of DFCU Financial, made the $10,000 foundation gifts. “We’re very happy to be a part of the Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti communities and extend our support to each community’s school district,” he said, noting that the credit union would offer both ongoing financial support and classroom expertise in the areas of financial literacy, budgeting and money management.

“The sum of the two, we hope will make a difference,” he added. “DFCU Financial looks forward to long and beneficial partnerships.”

Headquartered in Dearborn, DFCU is Michigan’s largest credit union with $3 billion in assets. For five consecutive years, DFCU Financial has issued the largest dividend in the history of credit unions of more than $90 million. The credit union reinvests in its membership with new branches, a no-interest, no-payment Career Transition Program and financial literacy education for all ages.

AAPS Interim Superintendent Robert Allen thanked DFCU officials and noted that Michigan school districts face “trying times economically and so the support we get from our foundation and other responsible business partners will certainly go a long way.”

The Ann Arbor Public Schools Educational Foundation is an independent, community-based, nonprofit organization committed to helping all Ann Arbor Public Schools students achieve their highest potential by providing community support for innovative and excellent educational opportunities. For more on the One Million Reasons campaign, visit, or call 734-994-1969.

DFCU Financial currently operates 24 full-service branches – 11 in Metro Detroit, three in Lansing, five in the Grand Rapids area and five in the Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti area. For more information, call 888-336-2700 or visit

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