INL News Release
May 19, 2008

Media Contact: Kortny Rolston (208)526-0962,

Eastern Idaho schools receive INL grants for K-12 projects

Idaho National Laboratory has awarded nearly $100,000 in grants to teachers across the state to improve science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education in grades K-12.

The lab’s Mini Grant program provides teachers up to $2,000 per proposal for classroom equipment, materials and professional development projects. More than 40 grants have been awarded this year to support innovative STEM projects throughout Idaho. Twenty went to eastern Idaho teachers stretching from St. Anthony to Pocatello.

For the first time this year, INL also awarded two $10,000 Science Laboratory Grants to Idaho schools to either establish or upgrade a chemistry or physical science laboratory.

This year’s recipients are Butte County High School in Arco and Kuna Middle School.

Grant applications are evaluated by a panel of judges based on specific criteria. Teachers are required to provide information on how learning objectives and curriculum concepts will be enhanced and how the project will bolster student interest and achievement.

The following is a list of the 2009 Mini Grant recipients in eastern Idaho:

Ted Simmons, Bonneville High School, $1,819 to build a Pinewood Derby track for the school’s physics labs

Michelle Ball, Sunnyside Elementary School, $974 to buy a high-resolution camera for her “Insects: Larger Than Life” project

Adrian McCracken, Telford Academy, $1,956 for special software to graph mathematical and linear equations

Thomas Kohler, Idaho Falls High School, $1,602 to buy metal detectors to help teach students algebra and geometry

Julie Tullis, Hillcrest High School, $1,958 to buy compasses and other equipment to map the Bird’s Nest Landslide in the Lost River Mountains near Arco

Shelly Thiel, Eagle Rock Junior High School, $2,000 to help pay for disadvantaged students to attend the Teton Science School in Jackson, Wyo.

Nancy Leahy, A.H. Bush Elementary School, $800 to buy a classroom viewing system called ELMO

Dale Walker, Bonneville High School, $2,000 to buy a DNA extraction centrifuge to help teach his students about genetics

Jill Lines, Falls Valley Elementary School, $1785 to buy three BrickLab surveys, a hands-on program that teaches students several subjects at once

Donna McCurdy, Arco Elementary School, $2,000 to buy an interactive white board (SMART board)

Lesa Hong, Blackfoot Charter Center, $2,000 to purchase Lego WeDo Robotics materials

Jeff Baldwin, Snake River Middle School, $1,990 to buy equipment to collect and study noxious weeds

Keith Drake and Stewart Portella, Firth High School, $808 to buy water-testing, animal-tracking and fly-tying kits for an ecology class

Stephanie Nickell, Pocatello Community Charter School, $2,000 to purchase computers to record and organize water data

Christenia Coast, Pocatello Community Charter School, $1375 to buy modeling equipment to study the Yellowstone hot spot

Cinde Wolfe, Rigby High School, $1,943 to buy Geiger counters and Global Positioning Systems

Karen Stewart, Harwood Elementary School in Rigby, $2,000 for technology equipment to visualize different cloud formations

Travis Phillips, Madison Middle School, $2,000 for equipment to perform chemical, biological, and physical tests on the major streams coming out of the Teton watershed

Kristie Parkinson, Juniper Hills High School in St. Anthony, $1,768 to buy equipment for a biology laboratory

Vince Wray, Shelley High School, $1,940 to buy solar panels and other equipment for a wind and solar testing project

Funding for INL’s Mini Grant program comes from Battelle Energy Alliance, a nonprofit organization that operates the lab for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

-INL- 09-020

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