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CHE and HBE score $4,000 literacy grants

Published on Monday, September 21, 2020

Cainhoy Elementary and H.E. Bonner Elementary both recently scored grants that will go toward supporting students and their reading.

These are Dollar General Youth Literacy Grants in the amount of $4,000 to both schools. H.E. Bonner’s funding will be used to support early literacy programs in kindergarten, first and second grades. Cainhoy Elementary’s will go toward a reading subscription for the whole school to utilize.

The Dollar General Literacy Foundation offers grant programs to qualifying organizations in the 44 states where Dollar General stores are located. Schools, public libraries and nonprofit organizations who help students who are below grade level or having trouble reading are eligible to apply for Youth Literacy Grants.

ELA Instructional Coach Joyce Ling applied for the grant at H.E. Bonner Elementary.

“Our intent is to set our youngest learners up for early literacy success and grow them into strong readers early in their academic lives,” Ling said. “We want to meet them where they are sooner rather than later.”

Details from H.E. Bonner’s grant proposal state the program will serve nearly 300 students in kindergarten through second grade. The texts and lessons the school will purchase will be used during the Enhanced Balanced Literacy Block as teachers instruct students in differentiated Guiding Reading instruction. All teachers will have access to the texts that are purchased, but those three younger grade levels will be the primary focus.

For $1,100 the school will purchase an additional three copies of the Literacy Footprint Teacher's Guide for kindergarten teachers. To support instruction, the school will purchase four Literacy Footprints Resource Kits, and purchase an additional six plastic tubs for book storage. These instructional materials will help to facilitate the school’s desire to grow its youngest readers into students with a strong literacy foundation.

Another $2,850 will go toward a Guided Reading Literacy Footprints Kindergarten Kit. The texts from the kit will be used primarily by kindergarten teachers with their students, but first and second-grade teachers will also have access to the texts for their below-grade level readers.

H.E. Bonner Elementary previously received the grant in 2014.

Media Specialist Ashley Illig applied for the grant at Cainhoy Elementary.

The school will use the funding to purchase a subscription software program called MyON, which provides an extensive choice of books in fiction and nonfiction. Illig said the program provides a lot of teacher interaction where teachers can create assignments for students – and easily assign books based on reading level.

Students will have their own MyON accounts. It offers quizzes and helps track students’ reading progress, like how many minutes they have been reading and how long they spend on one book.

Illig said she previously used the program in Charleston County.

“It’s a really great program…I love it and I think our teachers will love it too,” she said.

Illig said she was excited to receive the grant.

“I was running around the school screaming,” she said, adding, “I’ve been talking about MyON for years…I finally got it through Dollar General.”

Monica Kreber