Forty-three teachers across the state of Florida are recipients of a combined $47,000 in grants from Florida Power & Light Company's 2013 Teacher Grant program to support innovative, teacher-designed classroom projects. The projects aim to teach students about energy, its sources, and uses.
Teachers from more than 40 schools received grants ranging from $500 to $2,500 to fund projects including wind turbine generators, solar car and golf cart races, and cooking with the power of the sun. Brevard County came in second to Broward County for the most amount of grants awarded in Florida.
All projects adhere to the Florida State Board of Education's Sunshine State Standards. Teachers submitted proposals to be judged and selected according to stated goals, energy curriculum content, creativity, and plans for budget and evaluation. Completed projects may be featured on FPL's Solar Station website at www.FPL.com/solarstations.
"FPL has consistently demonstrated a commitment to clean energy in the community, and we're thrilled to partner with Florida's teachers to bring exciting, innovative projects into the classroom to get their students inspired to help us lead the way to tomorrow's clean energy world," said Pam Rauch, vice president of Development and External Affairs for FPL.
FPL's Teacher Grant Program has cumulatively awarded more than $175,000 to 175 teachers across FPL's 35-county service territory over the past four years. The grants are provided courtesy of the NextEra Energy Foundation, which is funded by shareholders of FPL's parent company, NextEra Energy, Inc., the nation's largest producer of renewable energy from the wind and the sun.
Recipients are selected by the National Education Energy Development project (NEED), a nonprofit organization working with energy companies and agencies to bring balanced energy curriculum and training to the nation's classrooms.
"While the importance of science and engineering education grows, school budgets are shrinking," said NEED Executive Director Mary Spruill. "The Teacher Grant program, combined with curriculum support and teacher training, steps up to help provide our schoolchildren the opportunities they need to learn about energy."
FPL's Teacher Grant program is part of FPL's larger commitment to clean energy in the state. Beyond the teacher projects, FPL has installed Next Generation Solar Energy Station arrays at 14 educational facilities across Florida and built three large-scale solar power plants to supply power to its customers.
The winning teachers include:
- Apollo Elementary School – Elizabeth Faulkner
- Bayside High School – Naim Torlak
- Brevard Virtual School – Teresa Arrouet
- Heritage High School – Somer Y. Sutton
- Heritage High School – W. Randy Lyons
- Jupiter Elementary School – Sherry Love
- Jupiter Elementary School – Tonya Doughty and Christine Gayle
- Merritt Island High School/DaVinci Academy of Aerospace Technology – Joseph Harvey
- Ocean Breeze Elementary School – Holly Mentillo
- R.L. Stevenson School of the Arts – Stacey O'Connor and Tom Englert
- Apollo Middle School – Luis Espinosa
- Broward County Schools STEM and Instructional Resources Department – Rosina Bencivenga
- Coral Cove Elementary School – Barbara Grillo
- Eagle Point Elementary School – Emily Taggart
- Gator Run Elementary School – Susan Beren
- Hollywood Park Elementary School – Eileen Santiago
- New River Middle School – Barbara Humphreys
- Nova Blanche Forman Elementary School – Marjorie Archer
- Panther Run Elementary – Nicole Williams
- Pembroke Pines Charter High School – Lianne Haviland
- South Broward High School – Milijan Milos
- Western High School – Chin Tang Liu
- Oasis Middle School – Lori McLain
- Pinecrest Elementary School – Carlene M. Grossi
- Belle Terre Elementary – Edward Wolff
INDIAN RIVER COUNTY:
- Sebastian Charter Junior High School – Cathleen Tinder
- Colonial Elementary School – Kimberly Clements
- James Tillman Elementary School – Karen Cobb
- Carrolton School of the Sacred Heart – Nancy Susana Chu
- Rockway Middle School – Rosa Milagros Rengifo
- South Miami Middle Community School – Susanne Banas
- Whispering Pines Elementary – Dianne Rizo and Ana Ugarte
PALM BEACH COUNTY:
- A.D. Henderson University School – Allan Phipps
- South Tech Academy – Meghan Hess
- Warfield Elementary School – Lisa Knapp
- Manatee High School – Patricia Harris
- Sarasota School of Arts and Sciences – Carlos Hernandez
- Wakeland Elementary School of International Studies – Edward Hashey
ST. LUCIE COUNTY:
- Mariposa Elementary School – Adam Archer
- Morningside Elementary School – Mollie Mukhamedov
- Rivers Edge Elementary School – Margo Barnes
- Rivers Edge Elementary School – Matries Florio (winner of two grants this year)
- Deltona High School – John Clark
SOURCE Florida Power & Light Company