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Foundation awards over $25,000 in grants to enhance learning in Jefferson City schools

A hand pointing out something on a computer screen while another person navigates where they're pointing with the track pad.
John Schnobrich
Over $25,000 in grants have been donated by local businesses and individuals in Jefferson City to fund its public schools. Some teachers are hoping to get new supplies and technology for their classrooms.

JEFFERSON CITY — The JC Schools Foundation surprised educators and administrators last week by awarding over $25,000 in grants to support 18 educational programs within the Jefferson City School District. These programs encompass various areas, including math, literacy, and leadership development.

The grants, ranging from $500 for individual classrooms to $5,000 for schools, were selected through yearly requests and funded by local businesses and individuals. Several initiatives received support from multiple donors, including the Jefferson City High School Class of 1973.

Peyton Leary, executive director of the JC Schools Foundation, said she worked closely with the communication program to help.

"The foundation is dedicated to raising funds to support our districts. The grants the districts received are going to help a wide variety of items and cultivate experiences for the kids," Leary said.

Last year, the foundation surpassed its record by raising $24,000, but this year, they aimed even higher.

"This year topped the record of $24,000 from last year, raising $25,000," Leary said.

Corina Henderson, a physical science teacher at the Jefferson City Academic Center, was presented the grant by Debra Kaiser, president of the JC Schools Foundation. Henderson said she was shocked to receive the grant and is very thankful for the foundation and community.

"I love being a teacher, and this grant will help me get supplies I need," Henderson said. "I am going to get a lab set for just my classroom as well as a digital scale and some disposable equipment."

Kaiser said delivering the checks to the teachers was her favorite part of the day.

"There was a photography class at Jefferson City High School, and she didn't have cameras. So I was like, how do you teach a photography class without cameras? We were able to fund six cameras, and when we presented her with the grant, she wept," Kaiser said.

To contribute to the grant initiatives, contact Leary at 573-659-3549. A full list of recipients can be found here.

KOMU 8 is a full-powered NBC affiliate operating as an independent commercial property. As such, KOMU 8 is the only major network affiliate in the United States that acts as a university-owned commercial television station utilizing its newsroom as a working lab for students.
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