Assoc. for Excellence in Education announces grants for Tupelo schools

TUPELO, Miss. (WCBI) – Students throughout the Tupelo Public School District will be able to use the latest technology and experience other innovative techniques, all at no cost to taxpayers.

It is all made possible through a partnership between the community and the district, known as the Association for Excellence in Education.

AEE announced next year’s grant recipients during a luncheon and Allie Martin was there.

The theme for this celebration was the Greatest Schools on Earth and Carver Elementary students took guests to the circus.

The Association for Excellence in Education announced its grant recipients for the upcoming school year. AEE was founded 40 years ago to provide project-specific grants to teachers throughout the Tupelo School District. Businesses and individuals provide the money.

“School budgets cannot cover everything teachers need, the purpose of the grants is to encourage innovation in the TPSD,” said Jennifer Lindsey, AEE Board Member.

39 grants were approved, including this high-tech augmented reality sandbox. The “Digging Deep” grant means Tupelo High School will become the first school in the nation with a high-tech reality table.

“This is Halo Sands, an interactive sandbox, that shines down a picture on top of sand, as you move it you see different environments, like the Appalachian mountains, Arctic Circle, rain, lava, and volcanoes, and see different weather effects,” said Kevin Kunze, Quietpixel, Inc.

Displays showcased AEE grants from last year and teachers say they have big plans for the current grant money.

“The first one is called Trail” Students have a book, taken apart and read a piece of book as they walk along a trail, parents and students will read the book as they walk along the campus, it’s about Elvis, it’s a biography,” said Anna Beth Williams, Lawhon Elementary.

“We asked for a grant for two things, one is new chassis for bigger robots we build, I only had one, we are also updating our LEGO set, we are running a 10-year-old set, and will now get a brand new one,” said Zane Sawyer, Tupelo Middle School.

AEE announced $111,000 in grants for the upcoming year. It is all part of a four-decade-long partnership between individuals and businesses who want to invest in the future.

Other awards were given to educators, community members, and businesses for their support of Tupelo schools.

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