The Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation announced today the 30 winning schools in the "D-backs $150,000 School Challenge," presented by University of Phoenix. With more than 400 submissions from Arizona schools, the winning grants come from all around the state of Arizona and will fund projects ranging in need from school improvements to innovative educational programs. Through the School Challenge program, the D-backs have provided more than 100 schools with $5,000 grants for an overall monetary commitment of more than $500,000 since the program launched in 2012.
"The D-backs are excited to once again partner with University of Phoenix to provide Arizona schools with much needed funding through our School Challenge program," said D-backs President & CEO Derrick Hall. "Each year the schools get more and more creative with their requests and it was particularly exciting this year to see how the schools will use the money from innovative educational programs to making necessary school improvements."
Winning schools will use the grant money to satisfy an array of needs, ranging from a STEM drone project to a student reporting lab, a desert pollinator garden to a dual language kid caster program and a band mentorship with special needs students. Each winning school will be honored and receive a check on the field at a 2015 D-backs game next April and May at Chase Field. The D-backs will donate 1,000 tickets for students, parents, teachers and staff to attend the D-backs' game in which their school will be honored.
"University of Phoenix is dedicated to meeting educational needs in Phoenix and across Arizona, and the projects funded by the School Challenge grants will do just that," said Tim Slottow, president of University of Phoenix. "We are excited to once again team up with the D-backs organization to help Arizona teachers inspire students by providing them with the skills and knowledge they need to become tomorrow's successful workforce."
Submissions from teachers and faculty came from 11 counties in the state and 47 cities. All public, private and nonprofit charter schools, Grades K-12 were eligible and the winning schools sought to bring in funds to assist in one of four categories: educational programs, innovation and technology, nutrition and fitness and school/campus improvements. The winning schools were:
|Alhambra Elementary||Sun and Fun - Enhancing STEM Saturdays||Phoenix||Innovation/Technology|
|ASU Prep Phoenix||Language courses for teachers and families||Phoenix||Educational Programs|
|Dr. Bernard Black Elementary||Ingenium Design||Phoenix||Innovation/Technology|
|Betty H. Fairfax High School||BFHS Vocation Program||Laveen||Educational Programs|
|Big Park Community School||Focused Fitness Five for Life||Sedona||Nutrition/Fitness|
|CASA Academy||The Road to College Starts with Literacy||Phoenix||Educational Programs|
|Copper King Elementary||Hope Garden||Phoenix||Nutrition/Fitness|
|Cooper King Elementary||Technology and Media Club||Phoenix||Innovation/Technology|
|East Valley Institute of Technology||Digital Sculpting for Animation and Game Art||Mesa||Innovation/Technology|
|Faith North Montessori||Tech Club||Phoenix||Innovation/Technology|
|Frye Elementary||Books available for all Frye Falcons||Chandler||School Improvements|
|Gompers Private School||Assistive technology work stations||Phoenix||School Improvements|
|Granada Primary School||Ivy League Innovators||Phoenix||Educational Programs|
|Heritage Elementary||Title I Tablets||Glendale||School Improvements|
|Ironwood High School||Ironwood Music Program||Glendale||Educational Programs|
|Kyrene de los Ninos||Dual Language Kid Caster||Tempe||Educational Programs|
|Longview Elementary||Cooking for Fitness and Language Improvement||Phoenix||Nutrition/Fitness|
|Mesa High School||Desert Pollinator Garden||Mesa||School Improvements|
|Monte Vista||First grade classroom computers||Phoenix||School Improvements|
|Ocotillo Early Learning Center||Ocotillo AAC Program||Tucson||Educational Programs|
|Pioneer Preparatory Charter School||Family Book Study Program||Phoenix||Educational Programs|
|Queen Creek High School||STEM Drone Project||Queen Creek||Innovation/Technology|
|Rio Rico High School||Band Practice Rooms||Rio Rico||School Improvements|
|Salome High School||Oh Snap. Digital photography and yearbook||Salome||Innovation/Technology|
|Sonoran Desert School||Grow a Garden||Gold Canyon||Nutrition/Fitness|
|Sonoran Trails Middle School||Vocabulary Enhancement||Cave Creek||Educational Programs|
|South Mountain High School||Jaguar News and PBS Student Reporting Labs||Phoenix||Educational Programs|
|Tempe High School||United Sound Band Program||Tempe||Educational Programs|
|Tres Rios Elementary||PE Equipment||Tolleson||School Improvements|
|Tuba City High School||STEM Integration Project||Tuba City||Innovation/Technology|
The $150,000 School Challenge is part of the organization's overall charitable efforts and this year the team and its charitable arm, the Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation, surpassed $40 million in combined donations since their inception in 1998.