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Spotlight: Excellence in Education

GRAYLING – The Grayling Regional Chamber of Commerce announced that its December Ambassador Spotlight was awarded to Crawford AuSable Excellence in Education Foundation (CAEEF)

CAEEF, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, was created in August 2015 by then-superintendent Joe Powers and the Crawford AuSable School District board of education to raise funds to provide academic and vocational scholarships to graduating seniors of the Crawford AuSable School District and grants to classes and educational organizations within the school district.

The foundation is operated by an 11-member, volunteer board of directors including Jim Kesseler, chair; Bill Dean, vice chair; Nancy Lemmen, secretary; Michele Steffey, treasurer; Jeff Branch, director; Donna Boughner, director; Roger Kesseler, director; Joe Powers, director; George Stancil, director; Lynn Thompson, director; Bill Weideman, director.

Kim Schmidt, CASD business manager, and Justin Gluesing, CASD superintendent, are ex-officio members. Tina Bassett helps maintain the database.

Funding for scholarships and grants comes totally from donations. In 2015, we set an initial fundraising goal of $1 million; thus far we have raised over $800,000, taking us more than four-fifths of the way to that goal. Donations (which are tax-deductible) of any size are very welcome and will move us closer to the $1 million mark, thus enabling us to provide more scholarships and grants to our CASD students.

Several of the grants awarded the past few years include:

  • Summer 2018: $1,000 to the GHS chemistry department for laboratory equipment and $1,000 to the GMS art department for digital cameras.
  • Winter 2019: $1,100 to the GHS P.E. Department for heart rate monitors, $600 to the GES Imagination Library and $300 to the GHS and GMS Viking Renaissance Programs for their prize closets, rallies and drawings.
  • Summer 2019: $1,100 to the GES STEM program for two Makey invention kits, $400 to the GMS robotics class for one super kit (+).and $100 to the GHS Viking Renaissance Program for prizes.
  • Winter 2020: $850 to the GES STEM/Robotics program to go toward a LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3 kit, $850 to GES for supplies for the BEE-Healthy Garden, $850 to the GMS World Cultures & Cuisines class for ingredients for dishes and $850 to the GMS Language Arts Department for its Shakespeare Drama unit.

People who wish to be included in the foundation database can access the form on the CAEEF homepage at casdk12.net/foundation

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