El Cajon’s Flying Hills Elementary School teacher Shauna Stueve is passionate about the environment. A long-time Ocean Beach resident and Surfrider Foundation volunteer, she wanted to give her third grade students an opportunity to see first-hand how their actions in East County make an impact in their neighborhood and all the way out to the coastline.

The only problem: her vision didn’t match her classroom budget.

But, with a $1,000 grant from The San Diego Teachers’ Fund at The San Diego Foundation, she’s putting her plan into action and sparking a newfound eco-awareness among her students and their families.

Using funds from the grant, Stueve and her class planted a school garden that they will tend and will soon go on a specially-designed beach cleanup day with the Surfrider Foundation. Stueve also included an arts component in which the students will design tiles displaying positive messages because Flying Hills is a Fine Arts Magnet Education school.

By having students participate in these projects, Stueve’s ultimate goal is to enhance her students’ knowledge and engage her student community with environmental awareness. Through these activities, students will learn about drought resistant plants and create stepping-stones with positive environmental messages.

These projects relate to the third grade curriculum through math, science, visual art and character education.

Grant Success History

Stueve has been down this fortunate road before.

This is the second grant Stueve has been awarded from The San Diego Teachers’ Fund. And a similar project she spearheaded last year continues to make an impact.

Her former students (now in fourth grade) still enthusiastically care for the garden they planted and their families proudly share their recycling success stories.

Environment Grant Fund

“At my Back to School night this year, parents were asking about last year’s project and whether their kids would have the chance to do something as well,” Stueve said. “People really appreciate what we’re doing. It’s helping the community around the school and making a difference in their lives.”

Grants Boost Lesson Plans by more than $62,000

The San Diego Teachers’ Fund supports K-12 public school teachers in San Diego County by improving teacher effectiveness and increasing student engagement and achievement through mini-grants for classroom and real-world projects.

This year, The San Diego Teachers’ Fund awarded 65 grants at 44 different schools across San Diego County, boosting local lesson plans with more than $62,000 to improve student engagement and impact communities regionwide. The grants range from the arts to the sciences and schools awarded include a wide range of public and charter schools, including schools at juvenile detention facilities.

Since 1995, The San Diego Teachers’ Fund has impacted more than 32,000 students and distributed more than $1 million to more than 1,000 deserving teachers.

“The premise behind the grants is that students who become engaged in the community around them learn more effectively, feel more empowered and become better citizens of the San Diego region and the world at large,” San Diego Foundation CEO Kathlyn Mead shared.

The San Diego Teachers’ Fund 2014-2015 program was funded by the FEDCO Charitable Foundation, a supporting organization of the California Community Foundation, and individual donations by generous donors with a passion for education.

Learn More

Since 1995, The San Diego Teachers’ Fund has impacted more than 32,000 students and distributed more than $1 million to more than 1,000 deserving teachers. Click below to learn more.

Learn More