PIE Prize Patrol Distributes Awards

The Prize Patrol from Partners In Education Foundation, Inc. (PIE) made its tour of El Dorado schools Tuesday March 1st to distribute this year’s Spring Awards. Two different types of awards were presented, $11,200 in Grants to Schools and $2,900 in awards from the Felix Alton Cantrell Jr. Fund. 

“We are especially proud that three community partners contributed to these awards. Commerce Bank continued its tradition of providing extra funds for Grants to Schools, Intrust Bank NA and Susan B. Allen Memorial Hospital are both sponsoring grants” says Rod Blackburn, Development Director. 

The bi-annual Grants to Schools awards are initiated by the instructors, librarians, or staff of the school district. They apply for grants using innovative curriculum, creative books, or other items that facilitate a positive classroom experience. A PIE committee reviews and selects the grants to be awarded based on the quality of the requests and the funds available. 

  •  At Skelly Elementary: Emma Schrag-Culbertson received two: “Active Calming Centers”, and “Building NeuroResilience Training”, Taryn O’Brien-Ogg received “Recess Rescue” 
  •  At Blackmore Elementary: Emma Schrag-Culbertson received another: “Student Leadership Team”, Carla Varner received “Glow and Grow Activities”, Julia Crowdis: “Flexible Seating”, Kent Kunkel: “Let’s Go GAGA!”, Leeann Morris: “Surgery Day” and “Indoor Recess Activities”, Luanna Lewis: “Reading Trail” and “Life is a Mystery” 
  •  At Grandview Elementary; Brittany Hartman: “Mystery Packs for Hands on Projects”, Ira Bane: “Imagine, Create, Build and Learn about the World” 
  •  At El Dorado High School: Saul Steffen for “Science Olympiad Kits” 
  • At El Dorado Middle School: Bailey Parker & Gera Poeschel: “Multicultural Graphic Novels”, Dawn Rush: “Bringing Balance to Science”, LuAnne Vides: “Life Strategies and Social Skills”, Michele White: “SPED Calm Learning Space” 
  • And even the administrators at the Central Office submitted grants this year.  Brett Remsberg wrote “Buzzing In” on behalf of the Scholars’ Bowl Team. Jennifer Davis submitted three 
    •  “Project Lead the Way Medical Detectives STEM Modules” Sponsored by Susan B. Allen Memorial Hospital 
    •  “OSHA” certifications 
    •  “CTE Celebration Night” Sponsored by Intrust Bank NA 

The generosity of Jeanette Rudy continues to benefit our community by using the Felix Alton Cantrell Jr. Fund entrusted to PIE. The Cantrell Committee selected 2 of the above requests totaling $2,900. These grants will provide students with special needs equipment that enhance their ability to learn and prosper. Items this year will provide flexible seating, calming tools, coordination tools, and other integrated curriculum aids. 

In addition to the over $14,000 awarded above, PIE has provided payments for over $17,000 in scholarships this school year for El Dorado students continuing their education at technical schools, community colleges, and universities. Plus, we are anticipating awarding over $25,000 in scholarships to this year’s graduating class. 

Partners In Education Foundation is a not-for-profit foundation established in 1989 to enhance the educational opportunities for the students of USD 490. For more information contact Rod Blackburn, Development Director at rod.blackburn@pie490.org, 316.322.4800.


Pictured above, Dawn Rush, Blackmore 7th Grade Science, receives a PIE award from Bernie Spradling, PIE President. PIE Board members Cindy Koehler, Laura Luehrs, Carolyn Dwire and USD 490 Fiscal Director, Kathy Robertson donning the Papple attire.

Pictured above, Jenifer Davis, USD 490 Instructional Support Director, receives three PIE awards from Bernie Spradling, PIE President, PIE Board members Cindy Koehler, Laura Luehrs, and USD 490 Fiscal Director, Kathy Robertson donning the Papple attire.