The Sterling Ridge Village Association welcomed administrative and PTO representatives from the three local elementary schools located within Sterling Ridge to its February board meeting. Each group presented on the progress of various school projects previously funded by the village association as well as any additional projects for which they were seeking funding. After the presentations, the board discussed at what level they wanted to support the school’s projects. It was reviewed that in 2016 the board donated a total of $5,500 and the budget for 2017 was set at $4,500. With adequate funds in hand, thanks in part to community sponsors of the association’s annual fall BBQ, the board voted to donate equal amounts of money to each school. Coulson Tough Elementary School, Deretchin Elementary School and Smith Elementary School were each presented with checks for $2,000 by the board.
“A core mission of the Sterling Ridge Village Association is to support our community schools and we are very excited to be able to once again support their wonderful projects,” said Sterling Ridge Village Association President Anthony Fasone.
Here are the highlights from the presentation of each school and how each of them will utilize the funds received at the meeting:
- Coulson Tough Elementary —They appreciated the funding from last year that helped the garden at the school and said the Garden Club continues to grow. This year they requested that we focus on arts in their school. They would like to do a mural with their students and local artist Vickie McMillan. They have a large international student body and they asked the students to submit artwork for the mural. The mural will cover two wall panels at the school and reflect the student drawings. McMillan will be at school for three days with kids helping to create and paint the mural. The mural will reflect the school with hand prints and leaf pressings from the students. Trees will also be included that are native to The Woodlands area. The total cost of the mural will be $6,450. They applied for a grant to the Texas arts commission and were awarded $1,935. That leaves $4,515 needed to complete the project.
- Deretchin Elementary– They appreciated the support from last year, which provided for the Wacom art tablets. They discussed needs for Deretchin for 2017 and explained how studies have shown improved mental acuity and energy for students who can learn in a standing position vs. traditional desks. They requested support for obtaining some stand-up Teacher/Student Desks. The desks will cost about $200-$500 each and they would like to buy as many as possible. For 5th and 6th grade and for teachers, the desks are larger and a little more expensive, around $500-$600. Deretchin has about 1200 students from K-6th grades and they believe these desks will be beneficial through all grades. This is the first year that Deretchin has implemented the stand-up desks and they requested any assistance possible to help get these desks at their school.
- Smith Elementary —Smith is a Title I school with 804 students in 38 classrooms. Next year the new 5th and 6th grade campus will be built, so Smith will be just a K-4th. In the past the school has used funds from the Sterling Ridge Village Association to build shade structures and to provide SMART boards. This year Smith is trying to put Tech-Tubs in each classroom. A Tech-Tub holds 6 Google Chrome Books and it is a locking box with storage for the Chrome Books inside where they rest in the tub and are charged. Teachers can then use the computers as needed with their students. 15 classrooms do not have them yet, so they are requesting $2,000 toward purchase of the Chrome Books Tech-Tubs.