AASA Awards $29,000 in Grants to School Districts for Children’s Urgent Needs

Jan. 5, 2010

Amy Vogt, AASA

Arlington, Va. – Children and families with urgent academic, health and social service needs in 16 school districts nationwide will benefit from $29,000 in grants awarded this week by the American Association of School Administrators. AASA's Urgent Need Mini-Grant program helps school districts provide necessities such as food, emergency shelter, medical supplies and clothing to disadvantaged public school children and their families.

“The current economic recession is a cause for great concern in our schools,” said AASA Executive Director Dan Domenech. “With higher unemployment rates, a greater number of Americans are being pushed into deep poverty. Overcoming the devastating effects of poverty on children’s lives and educational outcomes requires meeting non-school needs for safety, health, shelter and nurturing environments, while also providing high-quality opportunities to learn. AASA’s mini-grant program is a wonderful opportunity for AASA to help local superintendents address some of their students' immediate needs.”

AASA President Mark Bielang, superintendent in Paw Paw, Mich., also praised the program. “These funds allow superintendents to target direct services to address the specific needs of individual children. While the grants are modest, they can make a big difference in the life of a child.”

AASA received a total of 34 grant applications for the 2010 program. Each of the school districts receiving a mini-grant serves a large percentage of disadvantaged children.

Last fall, as the school bells tolled welcoming children back to school, the U.S. Census Bureau’s September 2009 report told the story of the significant impact of the economic crisis on this country. The number of people in America living in poverty rose by 2.5 million, painting a particularly bleak picture for our nation’s children, 14.1 million of whom lived below the poverty level in 2008. And with the loss of jobs in communities, families previously making it are struggling, too.

AASA is proud and honored to make this benefit available to its members. School systems receiving an AASA Urgent Need Mini-Grant are:

Arlee Joint School District #8

  • $2,500
  • Dr. John Jay Miller, superintendent, Arlee, Mont.
  • Weekend Family Food Backpacks for 65 students and 34 siblings

Dysart Unified School District

  • $2,000
  • Dr. Gail Pletnick, superintendent, Surprise, Ariz.
  • Clothing and hygiene products for 200 homeless students/families

Elfrida Elementary School District

  • $1,000
  • Dr. Timothy L. Pingle, superintendent, Elfrida, Ariz.
  • Transportation for health visits, clothing and prescription for children in Title I school

Gila County Regional School District

  • $2,000
  • Dr. Linda Odell, superintendent, Globe, Ariz.
  • Clothing/hygiene products and periodic food staples for “Second Chance” students.

Jefferson County School District

  • $2,500
  • Dr. Sheldon H. Berman, superintendent, Louisville, Ky.
  • “Blessing in a Backpack,” family food program for 1,000 students

Lyon County School District

  • $2,000
  • Dr. Caroline McIntosh, superintendent, Yerington, Nev.
  • School food pantry, warm weather clothing and backpacks to transport food home at 10 schools.

Montgomery Public Schools

  • $2,000
  • Dr. Barbara Thompson, superintendent, Montgomery, Ala.
  • Prescription assistance, emergency transportation and emergency food for 16 families

Mount Vernon Schools, District 80

  • $1,000
  • Dr. Kevin Settle, superintendent, Mount Vernon, Ill.
  • Urgent dental care

Natchez-Adams School District

  • $1,500
  • Dr. Anthony L. Morris, superintendent, Natchez, Miss.
  • Eyeglasses for 12 students and snacks for two diabetic students

Oxford School District

  • $1,000
  • Dr. Kimberly M. Stasny, superintendent, Oxford, Miss.
  • Urgent dental/medical care

Patrick County Public Schools

  • $2,500
  • Dr. Roger N. Morris, superintendent, Stuart, Va.
  • Weekend Family Food Backpacks for 50 students

Payson Unified School District #10

  • $2,500
  • Dr. Casey O’Brien, superintendent, Payson, Ariz.
  • Urgent dental care

Rocky Boy School District 87-J&L

  • $2,000
  • Dr. Voyd D. St. Pierre, Box Elder, Mont.
  • Winter clothing for 20 students on Indian reservation and 640 mini-meals for their field trip.

Tempe Union High School District

  • $1,000
  • Dr. Steve Adolph, superintendent, Tempe, Ariz.
  • Support transportation and infant supplies to keep disadvantaged parenting teens in high school.

Yuma Elementary School District One

  • $2,500
  • Dr. Darwin Stiffle, superintendent, Yuma, Ariz.
  • Two uniform sets, backpack, hygiene set and underwear for 25 homeless students

Yuma Union High School District #70

  • $1,000
  • Dr. Antonia Badone, superintendent, Yuma, Ariz.
  • Family assistance grants of $100 for 10 families

About AASA
The American Association of School Administrators, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders in the United States and throughout the world. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to the highest quality public education for all children. For more information, visit www.aasa.org.