The Foundation News

October 2019


New Scholarship Announcement


The Batavia Foundation for Educational Excellence is pleased to announce the availability of a $1,000 Molly Mae Vance Scholarship, established in memory of Molly Mae Vance, Batavia High School honors graduate, class of 2012. This scholarship is to provide financial assistance to a student who is planning to pursue his/her post-secondary education at a four-year college/university, a community college, a technical institute, or an accredited trade school with a focus on public service, philanthropy, teaching or nonprofit management.


Application information will be available soon!

April 2019


2019 Scholarship Winners


This past spring, 15 Batavia High School seniors were each honored with scholarships from the Batavia Foundation for Educational Excellence on behalf of Ann Rego, Marilyn Robinson, Matthew J. Nena, Megan Reed, Robert Morley, Rose Johnson, Sam Rotolo, Thomas L. Schmitz, and William Freiburger. Scholarships were awarded based on community service, school-related activities, and academic status.


Ann Rego Scholarship - $1,000

Scholarship Winner: Karleigh Tomasik

Awarded to a student pursuing a degree in English, education, or literature.


Marilyn Robinson Scholarship - $1,000

Scholarship Winner: Lindsey Sheehan
Awarded to a student pursuing a degree in education.


Matthew J. Nena Memorial Scholarship - $1,000 each

Scholarship Winners: Jenna Breiten, Raquel Cox, Joshua Irvine, Joseph Oroni, and Jessica Mangers

The scholarship is designed to honor college bound graduating seniors who have overcome a difficult situation in their life either academically, athletically, or personally.  


Megan Reed Scholarship - $1,000

Scholarship Winner: Natalie Bock

Awarded to a student pursuing a degree in communication.


Robert Morley Scholarship - $2,400

Scholarship Winner: Emily Acquaviva

Awarded to a student pursuing a degree in science.


Rose Johnson Scholarship - $5,400

Scholarship Winner: Brooke Thoman
Awarded to a student pursuing a degree in nursing.


Sam Rotolo Scholarship - $1,000

Scholarship Winner: Emily Tratar

Awarded to a student pursuing a degree in education at a four-year college or university.

Thomas L. Schmitz Scholarship - $1,000

Scholarship Winner: William Huber, Haley Moulton, Andrew Stasell

Awarded to a student who appreciates this community and will make an effort to also give back.


William Freiburger Scholarship - $1,000

Scholarship Winner: Kipp Knecht

Awarded to a student on the Batavia tennis team who embodied William’s love for others and serving community.

March 2019


2019 Grant Recipients


The Foundation funded 10 grants this spring, totaling $26,335.06. Grants were awarded based on a number of factors, including uniqueness, impact on the teaching/learning environment, number of students impacted, and alignment with BPS101 goals and priorities. Congratulations to the following grant recipients to be honored at the April 23rd Board of Education Meeting:


  • "Bulldog Fit n Fun Motor Pathways" Jen Curtis - BPS101 Physical Therapist
    • The purpose of this grant is to request funding from the BFEE to purchase blacktop stencils (re-usable) and a one time paint application kit for each elementary school from Fit n Fun Playscapes.  These stencils will enhance the recess experience by providing more diverse opportunities that benefit the whole child. Colorful pathways, shapes and designs provide new and fun peer interactions, opportunities for learning outside the classroom, and inclusion of all students with physical or cognitive needs. Fit n Fun Playscapes is a company that was founded in response to the need for colorful, innovative games that would engage kids longer, motivate them to be more physically active and to integrate educational concepts kinesthetically.
  • "Radio Free Batavia"  Kimberly Pearlman and Tom Shields - Batavia High School
    • ​This grant request grew out of existing and successful prototype assignments from two different subject areas (English and Social Studies).  Students from both subject areas embraced the opportunity to write, record, and “publish” original podcasts. This grant would fund a podcasting studio which will impact learning by allowing students the means to produce a variety of arguments, narratives, and inquiry-based projects in a real-world format beyond the standard essay, presentation or research paper. This project will allow our students to create professional sounding digital content for authentic audiences using varied media beyond the Chromebooks.
  • "LIT Spaces for ACES"  PLAC - Professional Learning Advisory Council
    • As educators, we know that a student is not ready to learn academically until their social emotional needs are met. A district priority over the past several years has focused on ACES (Adverse Childhood Experiences).  This has triggered an increased awareness of the needs of children and their families, and our Batavia staff is responding. We have implemented programs that meet our family’s needs. PLAC would like to assist our teachers and students by providing Lit Spaces for ACES. Working with each building’s targeted SEL goals and student’s needs, this grant would provide critical funding for establishing and extending an SEL collection of books/resources in each building. Teachers and students could access these resources as needed.  
  • "Ready to Research in Elementary"  Diane Kispert, Donna Hanrahan, Geralyn Wyatt, Tamra Ashby, Julie Phillips, Cheryl Koll - All Elementary LRCs
    • ​Primary Search is a database which provides students with encyclopedic entries written specifically for kids. In addition, the database includes full-text popular magazines including those from Ladybug, Spider, Highlights, Junior Scholastic, and almost 100 more. This grant request will provide access to this database for all elementary students in Batavia School District.
  • "Accessibility for All"  Christine Farley, Emily Reynolds, Sabina Walker - Grace McWayne School
    • This proposed project is intended to obtain an interactive BoxLite MimioDisplay to be mounted in the classroom. This wall-mounted interactive display would enable classroom teachers, related service providers, as well as support staff to deliver lessons to the students without students moving from their assigned classroom seating.  Currently, students move from their primary instructional locations for group instruction as a result of the classroom not having a system that allows for whole class instruction. Students with significant vision impairment as well as the need of adult support to manipulate instructional items and support for the physical act of writing are all affected by this.
  • "High Interest Classroom books for DEAR - Year 3"  Kelly Cook and Cara Schuster - Rotolo Middle School LRC
    • The RMS reading culture PLC has a mission to create a reading community within the middle school.  One way PLC has encourages reading by having DEAR time (Independent reading time: Drop Everything And Read).   The last two years, BFEE issued a grant to purchase new high interest books in every 6th and 7th grade classroom to encourage student participation.  Based on surveys completed by the 6th and 7th grade teachers, the program and purchase of the high interest books was a success. This grant is requesting funding for high interest books for the 8th grade classrooms.  This would finish the project by providing 8th grade teachers with new books for their classroom libraries.
  • "Adapted Art"  Nikki Pappanduros - Grace McWayne School
    • The goal of this project is to increase the amount of time that ILP students are practicing fine motor skills and/or imaginative play during their time in adapted art. By increasing the amount of time students are interacting with these activities, the outcome will be an accelerated progression of skills physically and socially.  Therapro is a company that makes therapeutic resources for teachers and parents and this grant would allow the purchase of therapy based materials, that are supported by research, to enhance the adapted art program at GMS. 
  • "Teen Zines - Sharing Students' Work"  Aimee Miller and Kathleen TieriTon - Batavia High School
    • A zine (zeen) is an independently or self-published booklet. Zines are one method a teen can use to make their voice heard and creating a zine library of sorts in the back room of the LRC. It would be a place for students to display and share their created zines with a larger audience. This grant is asking for two acrylic magazine displays to mount on the wall. Having a display will encourage students to read and possibly create their own zines. Zine workshops would be periodically offered in the back room of the LRC for students who would like to learn how to create their own zines.  
  • "Guided Math Materials Extension Grant" Julia Parkhurst and Ashley Case - Louise White School
    • ​Last year, BFEE funded a grant for Guided Math materials at the school. We have worked hard to incorporate these items in every grade level. The math tools are being used from Kindergarten to 5th grade for counting, sorting, and practicing multiplication and division. This grant is to purchase additional math manipulatives, games and other materials to enhance what is already there. Some of the items are repeats from the original list, that other teachers would like to use. Many of the requested items are for new items that they feel would be used on a regular basis to teach specific math skills or to help with guided or independent math stations during guided math.
  • ​"Training for Tokyo" Julie Phillips, Nicole Prentiss, Phil Albrecht - JB Nelson School
    • ​This project will be a cross discipline collaboration on the part of the LRC Director and the PE teacher at the school. This partnership will allow students the time they need to be engaged in the project while also integrating different learning environments and styles.  The students would read a story, research the Olympics, and then “create” an event in PE class with their peers. This will teach the children collaboration, coding, and design.


February 2019


The New Look of BFEE

Over the past three months, the Batavia Foundation for Educational Excellence has been involved in the process of updating its visual identity. One of the primary goals was to create a logo that incorporates the Foundation’s special characteristics and mission (to partner with BPS101 and the community to achieve educational excellence) through symbolic design elements.

To create the actual logo, BFEE enlisted the help of the creative agency Rule29, which is based in Geneva, Ill., and owned by BPS101 parents Justin and Sarah Ahrens.

“The Rule29 team did an outstanding job capturing our vision,” said Cara Newkirk, BFEE member and marketing committee chair. “We couldn’t be happier with the final product.”

The new logo includes a torch, an icon widely associated with academics, to symbolize the foundation’s passion for all students within Batavia Public School District 101. The torch’s base is styled to represent a shield, which visually connects to BPS101’s logo. The color of the new logo also complements the District logo.

Two versions of the logo were created. One with the organization name spelled out and one with just the acronym for use in smaller spaces.“We feel great about the new look,” said Newkirk. “The focus of our branding strategy is on unity and connection with BPS101 and the community, and building on the strong history we already have.”

November 2018


Our Chair, Jan Wright, presented at a recent Batavia PechaKecha event.  Below is the video she presented, giving information about the Batavia Foundation.

Batavia Foundation for Educational Excellence:

PO Box 1003

Batavia, IL 60510


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