Last week, an entourage of Coastal Electric Cooperative employees, camera crews and school administrators burst into 12 area classrooms with a big surprise.
Teachers in Liberty, Bryan and McIntosh counties received up to $2,000 each to fund Bright Ideas projects they had submitted to Coastal in August.
The projects ranged from outdoor learning spaces to hands-on robotics to life skills training.
“They all push the envelope of engaging education and take student learning to the next level,” Coastal’s vice president for communications Mark Bolton said.
Funding for the Bright Ideas grants comes from Coastal Electric Cooperative members who allow their electric bills to be rounded up to the next dollar through Operation Round Up. Those nickels and dimes are pooled and distributed by the Coastal Electric Cooperative Foundation to benefit the community.
Since the Bright Ideas program’s inception in 2002, more than $265,000 has been awarded to give area teachers who came up with projects and then applied.
This year’s Liberty County winners are:
First Presbyterian Christian Academy
Angel Kicklighter, “Study and Life Skills.”
Button Gwinnett Elementary
Tracie Chavis, “Brains, Bots and Codes.”
Cherie Boyd, “Solution Corp.”
Crystal Ball, Wyanda Bush, Pertrona Latson, Camilla Quarterman and Alesia Arthur, “Outdoor Classroom Lab.”
Charlie Moon, “Special Needs Sensory Room.”