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The Operation Round Up Board of Directors initiated a program offering small, $500 grants to teachers. Grants were available to K-12 teachers in math or language arts for the 2019-2020 school year. The funds are made available by South Plains Electric Cooperative members contributing to Operation Round Up. Their monthly bill is rounded up to the next dollar, and the extra change, averaging only $6 per year, funds projects like the teacher mini-grants, scholarships and much more.
Maria Ruvalcaba is a kindergarten reading and language arts teacher at Oak Ridge Elementary and is a 2019-2020 Operation Round Up Mini-Grant recipient. With the mini-grant, Ruvalcaba purchased dry-erase boards, reading and writing bundles, and write, wipe and build boards to expand the Fantastic Future Writers project.
“I have seen rapid growth in these children,” Ruvalcaba said. “Most students did not know the letters of the alphabet at the beginning of the school year, and they could not write or create sentences.”
The Fantastic Future Writers project at Oak Ridge Elementary was developed with intentions for every student to engage in writing. This project teaches specific writing skills for beginning writers. The goal is to give students the skills they need to encode words, write, develop excellent writing skills, and become fantastic writers.
“This grant has contributed so much to my students’ academic growth. You have made learning fun and so much easier for our class,” Ruvalcaba said. “Thank you for all that you do for our children, their future, and our community.”