BRYAN, Texas — From Pre-K all the way up to high school, we spend so much of our days at school and by default, with our teachers. Even as the virtual classroom remains a reality for some, educators have adjusted our learning process. One local club is giving back to those students and teachers to shape a better community and school district.
Members of the Bryan Rotary Club gathered on Wednesday to celebrate teachers in the Bryan School District.
“Every year the Rotary Club of Bryan gives ‘teacher mini grants’ to different teachers throughout the Bryan district,” Crystal Dupre, Teacher Mini-Grant Chair for the Bryan Rotary Club, said. "And today those were awarded months ago and we asked them to come in and just a few minutes talk about their grant, what it means to them and what they have done with their grants.”
This year, the club gave out 12 grants to teachers, totaling nearly $11,000 in total contributions.
“We know teachers struggle every year,” Dupre said. “They struggle with having to pay for supplies out of their own pocket or not being able to do certain projects. So this is just a service project that we do [to] give back.”
Grants are meant to help the students and when the committee is deciding who gets the grant, members look at how many students will be affected and if the impact of that specific grant will be carried into the next years.
With a lot of changes from the pandemic, the grants were able to help make that transition to virtual school a little easier.
“It was really important because we have a lot of students as online learners during the transition of this school year,” Jacklyn Nacianceno, Instructional Coach at Bryan ISD said. “So what this meant was they were able to get consistent instruction and a consistently aligned curriculum that was provided for them from their teachers and then ease the load for teachers.”
Giving back to the school district allows teachers to better provide for and teach the students.
"Teachers spend a lot of money of their own to try and do the best that they can for the kids." Darla Moore, 2nd grade teacher at Allen Academy, said. "So to have this opportunity to get money from an organization is so helpful because we can think bigger than we would if we were just using money out of our pocket."
The hope of this teacher mini-grant program is to continue to grow and fund every single grant request.