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FMPS Awards Nearly $80,000 to 40 Schools

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MADISON, WI – Today the Foundation for Madison’s Public Schools approved $77,519 for grants to 40 Madison schools to support creative and innovative projects that are not funded within the core school budget.  These grants are part of the Foundation’s School Endowment initiative which is the first of its kind in the country. Since the program started, it has invested nearly $600,000 into Madison schools.

“Thanks to the generosity of hundreds of contributors, we have built endowments for all 50 of our Madison public schools. This year, those endowments generated nearly $80,000 in income that we will grant directly back to schools to support innovative projects that help students thrive,” said Melinda Heinritz, Executive Director of the Foundation for Madison’s Public Schools (FMPS).  “We look forward to working with the Madison community to grow more resources, like the School Endowments program, to support our students and staff on the ground-level within our schools.”

FMPS’ School Endowment Funds were established through a 2003 challenge gift to FMPS from John and Leslie Taylor and the Madison-based Clay-Price Fund. Every Madison public school has its own endowment and the annual income is used to support programs and activities that are beyond the schools’ limited budgets. A grants committee at each school often made up of a combination of staff, teachers, students and parents supervises disbursement of the funds which are available through an annual grant process. Grants committees look at their schools in a longer-term, more strategic way when deciding which grants to award.

Some of this year’s projects include:

  • Cherokee Middle’s grant supports the Coffee Cart, an instructional model designed for special education students with intellectual disabilities that provides students hands-on, real-life experience with functional skills connected to servicing a food cart.
  • Jefferson Middle’s funds will support a student-led club focused on raising mental health awareness, educating the school community, supporting students, promoting services and supports, developing and creating advocates and leaders, and creating a greater dialogue for mental health and wellness.
  • Marquette Elementary will use Virtual Reality Glasses to provide students shared virtual experiences that could not be possible in a regular classroom or through field trips. In addition to improving the background knowledge and experiences of all students, it provides increased access to all students.
  • Shabazz City High School will be supporting the introduction of their new Forensic Science class with a Flinn Super High Contrast Compound Microscope.

To see a complete list of the school endowment grants, click here.

School Endowment grants are made possible through the generous support of our community. As the endowment funds grow, the interest available for grants will also grow. Donations to school endowments can be made through the Foundation for Madison’s Public Schools at or by calling (608) 232-7820.

The Foundation for Madison’s Public Schools is committed to supporting the education of every child by raising private funds, awarding grants, developing community partners, and advocating for Madison’s public schools.  More information about FMPS is available at or by contacting the Foundation, 101 Nob Hill Road, Suite 300, Madison, WI  53713, and (608) 232-7820.

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