News
June 20, 2018
link to facebook link to twitter
More Stories
Rancho 2018 cap toss Tech 2018 cap toss RP will extend contract with Recology despite rocky start Rancho varsity baseball team The Cotati City Council meeting A chance to see both local and world renowned artists at work RP Department of Public Safety swears in new officers/dispatchers RCHS 2018 Valedictorians Top award for Rotary Club of Rancho Cotati Despite training, clerks still sell alcohol to minors Local aid to Puerto Rico Out of the ashes comes the first Coffey Park home RP’s new general plan to span next 20 years Car break-ins hit Liman Way Cotati roads scheduled for a facelift Memorial Day means seat belt enforcement Cotati to oppose Senate bills Office hours notice: Prostitution ring uncovered SSU commencement Penngrove’s 4th annual Down Home Day RP attempting to alleviate traffic woes 1 dead after Sonoma State stabbing, suspect arrested Wildfire awareness week urges vigilance Crab feed comes to Penngrove SSU stabbing victim identified 1 dead after Sonoma State stabbing, suspect arrested Fire displaces RP residents Co-founder of Rohnert Park passed away April 20 Graton Casino funds to help community projects Local startup chosen to operate Cotati’s Veronda-Falletti Ranch RP votes to increase sewer rates Former SSU professor dies RP Council votes to extend terms Cotati City Council presented with awards for excellence in city budget Cotati to get new park and ride Technology High School relocates Be a part of history: Penngrove to assemble time capsule RP residents win Miss Sonoma County and Outstanding Teen Financial challenges may cause station closures Drag racer dies Crash simulation emphasizes emergency preparedness Two alarm fire displaces RP residents, destroys home Snyder era ends at age 92 CRPUSD Special Ed program falters Remembering Cory Vaughn Free tax prep assistance for low income residents Judson Snyder, columnist 53 alleged Brown Act violations Vehicle thefts drops Reconfiguration of RP schools Sonoma County reports flu death Crash causes small gas leak Standing together on gun reform Community SAIF celebrates heroes Drunk driver tries to flee scene RP's new municipal regulations will try and curb parking problem Pursuit of erratic speeding driver leads to DUI arrest SR woman killed by SMART train Correction: Greenhouse gas reduction efforts Rainfall levels are up – But not yet normal Graffiti threat tests Rancho’s emergency protocol RP partners with Rotary Clubs to clean up creeks New RP homeless count and SR homeless camp eviction Every 15 Minutes at the Ranch RP cracking down on distracted driving RP votes to change commissioner terms SSU shines at United Nations RP nixes idea for hotel tax increase measure Council approves La Plaza park for fundraiser No future for local karaoke Haircuts and meals for homeless National Walk Out A science guy goes angling Schools for climate action TRIO works in Rohnert Park Gov. Brown swears in newCHP Commissioner SSU loses compassionate alumna Traffic signal updates Bunnies and eggs come to Cotati Tour bus rams bridge on the way to Graton Casino

Awards and grants bestowed on local teachers

  • Superintendent Robert Haley with Valerie Moran - secondary, Vera Blanquie EF President and Ryan Kurada - elementary winners of the 21st Century Award at May 16th's award and grants events organized by the Education Foundation of Rohnert Park. Robert Grant

By: Irene Hilsendager
May 25, 2018

What is an Education Foundation? An educational foundation is an organization set up to educate the public and often act as charitable benefactors raising funds for and awarding scholarships and grants. Wednesday, May 16 was such a day of giving awards and grants to teachers from the Rohnert Park-Cotati Unified School District. 

The Board of Directors is made up of active members from the community, parents, business leaders, teachers and administrators who all share a common bond with education. The community must work as a whole to prepare the young for a very complicated world. While the foundation is independent of the school district, communication must be maintained through a district liaison. The Education Foundation assists teachers by supporting the teachers’ quality of education. 

All kinds of groups, from fraternities to animal right activities, but mostly educational foundations focus on a specific group; however, the Educational Foundation has a unified goal and that is giving grants to teachers. The Education Foundation of Cotati and Rohnert Park was founded in 1983 due to the reality of dwindling state funds available to support education integrity in the local community.

Vera Blanquie, a long time Education Foundation president and master of ceremonies introduced the room of city and school dignitaries. 

“Another year has passed with summer upon us and it is time for the yearly grant giveaway. It is time to appreciate the talented leadership that is best for our schools,” Blanquie said.

Through many different fund-raising activities and generous donors, the foundation provides otherwise unavailable funds for the education programs in all local classrooms. 

Fifty-four grants were handed to eager hands as names were being called. 

The Education Foundation also provides funding for innovative programs that address diversified styles of teaching and learning and allow students to be introduced to real life experiences.

The grant process begins with a teacher or administrator submitting a written proposal. The Grant Committee Facilitator assigns each grant a number so it will remain anonymous of the grant writer and school site.

Blanquie has been on the Education Foundation board for over 20 years and is very proud that she and her very talented board along with many giving sponsors has raised over $750,000 dollars. 

One other fund raiset puts the funds in the grant ‘kitty’ is the Sharing of the Green, 32 years of a ballroom evening of fun with dancing dinner, live auctions and raffles. 

Dr. Venus Maher, a prominent chiropractor does Doctors with a Heart every spring and donates all proceeds to the foundation. The Accordion Festival also gives $5,000 from their ‘must attend’ August festival. 

Outstanding educators are presented with the Lou Colby Award. This award was named after Lucille Colby who was an educator for 33 years. In 1977 she came to Rohnert Park teaching third grade at Waldo Rohnert Elementary and went on to be the principal at La Fiesta School for eight years and interim principal at Mountain Shadow Middle School. Colby passed away in September of 2000. The Colby Award has had a name change. Now it is called the 21st Century Award and two recipients were on hand to receive the coveted award. 

Ryan Kurada has been teaching for only three short years. He has a master’s in early childhood and is a great motivator when it comes to leadership.

Valerie Moran has been a middle to high school project leader. Moran even sets up crime scenes in her classroom for the students to solve. Valerie was an instant grant writer with absolutely no experience and an excellent teacher in the Pathway Medical Program.