By Haley Grugel
The next generation of children are the future of our city, state andcountry as a whole. School is an important factor in shaping the next generations and the West Ada Education Foundation has made it their mission to support Ada County students in creating brighter futures. The foundation is made up of a team of volunteers from the community who come together working to raise supplemental funding and support. Through various fundraisers, the foundation is able to provide assistance for educational programs and projects as well as classroom innovation. These programs reach almost 40,000 students in 55 schools in the West Ada County District. The foundation’s vision is to “enhance educational opportunities and provide foundation for the future success of all students in the West Ada School District.”
There are many different programs headed by the foundation, each focusing on a different aspect of assisting students. The innovative grant program gives teachers an avenue to fund new, innovative ideas that may not be included in district funds. Many schools have a robotics program during and after the school day that has been funded by grants. When asked if she had a specific program she was most passionate about, Britteny Gardner, president of the volunteer board stated, “I love being able to see how amazing our teachers are at stretching the dollars we raise for their classrooms and students. I am passionate about our mission to provide supplemental funding and support for educational programs and projects in classroom innovation for the benefit of students in our district.” The foundations funding proven program assists in providing funding for special events and rendezvous that are often not state funded such as field trips. Donors of the foundation also help to fund various scholarship programs. The housing program provides housing stipends for unaccompanied youth ages 18-21. The goal of this is to encourage homeless students to stay in school instead of dropping out.