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Foundation 65 received a $120,000 grant from the Lewis-Sebring Family Foundation to support strategic program development over the next three years.  This grant will support arts and literacy programs that  impact students throughout District 65 and serves as a match to Northwestern University’s $120,000 grant announced this spring.

“Foundation 65 is profoundly grateful to the Lewis-Sebring Family Foundation for their continued support of Foundation 65 and education in Evanston,” said Executive Director, Lise Jinno.  “Their generosity allows us to make an even greater investment in programming that has a measurable impact on our students.”

Over the past three years, Foundation 65 has invested in arts and literacy programs with an increasing focus on building the connection between the home and the classroom, the school and the community.  During the 2011-2012 school year, Foundation 65 will fund the following programs designed and selected to support educational advancement in Evanston:

  • “Advancing Literacy for ALL” will increase students’ ability to read and understand complex science and social studies texts and better prepare students for the challenge of successful learning in high school.  
  • “Engage! Art, Literacy and Civic Participation” will use art as a springboard to self-expression and community participation for middle school students by engaging them in community service projects relating to issues of violence, respect, and kindness.
  • “Family Author Experience” works to create a shared family and school-wide experience through an author visit and school-based activities related to the visit.  Having reached all other District 65 schools in the last two years, Lincolnwood, Kingsley, Orrington, Willard, Haven and Bessie Rhodes will host author and photographer Nic Bishop this year.
  • “Kindergarten Literacy Education at Play (Kindergarten LEAP)” uses innovative play scenarios to address early literacy skill building and community and social interaction.  Foundation 65 is supporting this project in 12 District 65 schools.
  • “Kindergarten Library Tours” provides funding for all District 65 Kindergarteners to visit the Evanston Public Library and get a library card, introducing these emergent readers to this wonderful community resource.
  • “Summer Reading Program” provides reading support to first grade students who received supplementary reading support in first grade.  From June through August, teachers correspond with students and send them books in the mail.  Research has shown students can lose from one to three months of reading achievement over the summer and by keeping these struggling readers engaged in reading, they are able to maintain the reading growth they attained during the school year. 

Foundation 65 is a non-profit organization that raises and grants funds for literacy and arts projects for students, staff, and community in School District 65. Foundation 65 is an independent operating foundation with its own volunteer board and funds.  Since 2003, Foundation 65 has invested over $700,000 in more than 55 projects and programs in the District.