Acre­man Ele­men­tary re­ceives Indigo-chap­ters grant

$19,000 go­ing to­wards new books and li­brary sys­tem said prin­ci­pal

The Compass - - ORTHTE - BY NI­CHOLAS MERCER

The pro­mo­tion of read­ing and the ben­e­fits it has with young chil­dren was one of the mes­sages pro­moted at an assem­bly at Acre­man Ele­men­tary in Green’s Har­bour, Nov. 16.

Acre­man Ele­men­tary prin­ci­pal Patricia Collins-yet­man said the pur­pose for the assem­bly was to “toot our own horn.”

“To­day, we are cel­e­brat­ing a cou­ple of re­ally, re­ally big wins for our small school,” she said.

Acre­man houses stu­dents in Kinder­garten to Grade 6, to­tal­ing 83 stu­dents.

The big­gest win for the school comes in the form of $19,000 grant from Indigo-chap­ters for the Love of Read­ing Foun­da­tion.

“All of this is pos­si­ble be­cause we have great staff here, and we have fab­u­lous stu­dents here as well,” said CollinsYet­man in her open­ing ad­dress.

Se­nior ed­u­ca­tion of­fi­cer Ray Noel brought greet­ings from the East­ern School District.

“I’d like to com­mend Miss Collins-yet­man and the staff at Acre­man for these won­der­ful achieve­ments,” he said.

Noel en­cour­aged stu­dents to con­tinue with their love of read­ing, and for their par­ents to con­tinue to push their chil­dren to read.

“When I read to my grand­son moms and dads, I can turn some­thing that is a book into a real ex­pe­ri­ence,” he said. “There are all kinds of noises and ac­tions you can make and that is the chal­lenge I put out to you this morn­ing.”

The grant money will be paid out to the school over a pe­riod of three years.

“To put it in per­spec­tive, Acre­man is a small school and that is a tremen­dous amount of money,” said Noel.

Noel said some of the larger schools would have to re­ceive grants of up­wards to $200,000 to par­al­lel the amount of money Acre­man is re­ceiv­ing over the three­year pe­riod.

To be con­sid­ered for the grant, Collins-yet­man said schools have to de­velop a pro­posal, speak about the dif­fer­ent lit­er­ary pro­grams avail­able to the school as well as pro­pose fu­ture lit­er­ary projects for the school.

“Then you get a phone call from Indigo hop­ing that you have won,” she said with a laugh.

The grant money is di­vided into a $5,700 credit at Indigo-chap­ters to be used at any time and $600 for pur­chases to­wards the li­brary.

“We have un­til May to spend this year’s money and then in April, we get the next por­tion,” said Collins-yet­man. “Spend­ing it shouldn’t be a prob­lem though.”

The prin­ci­pal does not know if any left over money will be added to the next in­stall­ment , or if it just goes away, but she will have to fill out an an­nual re­port for the money Acre­man has spent. “So there is some ac­count­abil­ity,” said Collins-yet­man. The $600 will be go­ing to­ward the pur­chase of a com­put­er­ized li­brary sys­tem, she stated.

Plans are for a com­plete over­haul of the read­ing ma­te­rial avail­able to the stu­dents of Acre­man Ele­men­tary, with the help of the $5,700 credit.

“We’re go­ing to have $19,000 in new books for the li­brary,” said Collins-yet­man. “We want to keep adding and keep the mo­men­tum go­ing.”

New­found­land and Labrador Premier Kathy Dun­derdale was in­vited to at­tend the fes­tiv­i­ties, but could not make it.

In her place, Trinity-bay de Verde MHA Char­lene John­son made an ap­pear­ance.

“This is one of my favourite parts … get­ting out to the schools be­cause they are our fu­ture,” she said af­ter tak­ing the time to read with some of the stu­dents dur­ing a read­ing pe­riod dur­ing the assem­bly.

John­son said it was won­der­ful that the school was able to win the award from Indigo-chap­ters.

“A thank-you to Chap­ters and a huge congratulations to you guys for be­ing the only school in the prov­ince to win the award,” she said.”

A smart­board bo­nanza

To go along with the Indigo-chap­ters grant, Acre­man was on the re­ceiv­ing end of an­other award.

Collins-yet­man said the school will be re­ceiv­ing a $4,500 smart­board from the Bell Aliant Pi­o­neers. “It is the Cadil­lac of smart­boards,” she said. This an­nounce­ment comes on the heels of the provin­cial govern­ment’s an­nounce­ment of the pur­chase of 1,934 new smart­boards for schools across New­found­land. The an­nounce­ment was made two weeks ago. “Stu­dents are in the age of tech­nol­ogy them­selves … and to have some­thing that re­sponds the way that they are used too … I think it means a lot, and it is go­ing to add a lot to their cur­ricu­lum,” said CollinsYet­man.

Christa Hunt joins her daugh­ter, Emma, in the read­ing of “Thump, Quack, Moo: A Whacky Ad­ven­ture” at Acre­man’s read­ing assem­bly Nov. 16.

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