Board members, donors and volunteers from The Foundation for Educational Excellence surprised faculty members from 15 schools across Beaufort County last month with balloons and oversized checks as they awarded the teachers the Foundation’s Innovative Teacher Grants for Fall 2018.

These 19 grants, totaling more than $14,000, will impact students throughout the district in classes ranging from early childhood centers through high school.

Some of the projects funded this year include outdoor fitness stations, 3-D anatomical models, photography equipment and supplies for creating a school-wide composting initiative.

Among the recipients are Agata Marzec, an English teacher at May River High School, who was awarded a grant for her project “Sensory Wonder: Creating a Tactile-Audio Illustrated Book for Learners with a Visual Impairment.”

This grant will allow her students to enhance their creative writing skills, while simultaneously raising their awareness of the needs of learners with a visual impairment and learning the principles of Braille.

Other Greater Bluffton winners were Bree Lauffer and three others of Okatie Elementary School, for “What Goes Around, Comes Around”; Eric Mohrman of River Ridge Academy, for “Flying High with Hot Air Balloons”; Mohrman and Marlayna Tracy of River Ridge Academy, for “Young Astronauts Rockets into Space”; Sandra Viskovich and five others of Red Cedar Elementary, for “PBL is Going Green in Kindergarten”; and Jana Goodwin Shea of H.E. McCracken Middle, for “Modeling the Physics of Roller Coasters.”

For more information, visit Foundation EdExcellence.com.