2014-11-14 / Community

Education Foundation wins award from state association

By Alex Acquisto
Staff Writer


Ted Damon, founder of the Education Foundation of the Kennebunks and Arundel, displays the award presented to the foundation in late October by Marlene Tallent of the Maine School Management Association. The distinguished outstanding service award is the highest honor a nonprofit organization can earn through the MSMA. The Education Foundation was started in 2006 and has contributed more than $700,000 to district programs. (Courtesy photo) Ted Damon, founder of the Education Foundation of the Kennebunks and Arundel, displays the award presented to the foundation in late October by Marlene Tallent of the Maine School Management Association. The distinguished outstanding service award is the highest honor a nonprofit organization can earn through the MSMA. The Education Foundation was started in 2006 and has contributed more than $700,000 to district programs. (Courtesy photo) The Education Foundation of the Kennebunks and Arundel was presented with a distinguished outstanding service award for its contributions to Regional School Unit 21 at the annual Maine School Management Association meeting in late October.

The district nominated the Education Foundation for the honor, which is the highest a nonprofit organization can earn.

“The Education Foundation has been a significant force in our district since its inception in 2006,” said Superintendent Kevin Crowley. “As a district, we are very fortunate to have their support.”

The Education Foundation has contributed more than $715,000 to the district in the past eight years. The foundation makes annual donations for ongoing programs, such as the educatorin residence program at the Middle School of the Kennebunks and the artist in residence at Kennebunk Elementary School.

The foundation has helped the district purchase a variety of robot kits and programming, and helped the first preengineering class at Kennebunk High School obtain a sustainable hoop house. It also funds out-of-state trips across the grades, and its funding has allowed fifthgraders across the district to attend the Julia Robinson Math Festival.

The foundation also contributes regularly to STEM learning throughout the district. This school year, the Education Foundation donated nearly $6,500 to Keyboarding Without Tears — a program for elementary-aged students that helps with acclimation to keyboards, digital literacy and general familiarity.

Ted Damon founded the Education Foundation in his retirement in an effort to foster a more engaging and appealing learning atmosphere for students he saw who had “very little focus and engagement” and were “bored.”

The first donation made by the Education Foundation in 2006 allowed freshmen at Kennebunk High School to attend the Space Science Center in Bangor.

Since then, funding has not been reserved for students; the foundation allocates approximately 27 percent of the total amount donated to teacher training and workshops.

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