A Pretty Grant

PTO secures grant for beautification of grounds at SSMS

From Staff Reports

Feb. 26, 2007 - Sulphur Springs Middle School is getting a facelift — or at least the yard will — thanks to a $4,100 grant from Lowe's Charitable and Educational Foundation.

Staff Photo by Angela Pitts

Sulphur Springs Middle School PTO recently received a $4,100 grant from Lowe's to help fund a beautification project for the school. Pictured (left to right) are: Gail Calhoun, PTO secretary; Glenn Wilson, SSMS principal; Shannon Forsman, PTO vice president; Tammy Cooper, PTO president; and Keith Williamson, Lowe's.

The Toolbox for Education grant was awarded to the SSMS Parent Teacher Organization for a school beautification project to not only make the grounds more aesthetically pleasing by updating the flower beds, but also complete an outdoor classroom easily accessible for handicapped students.

The walk ways, around the building and areas between buildings and in front of SSMS will be landscaped with flowers and vegetation.

PTO members applied for the grant citing the school's use for myriad extra-curricular activities and community events, such as Hopkins County Relay For Life, Little Dribblers and other sports activities.

"This campus gets numerous visitors and the SSMS PTO wants these visitors to know that the administration, faculty, students and parents are proud of their school and the education that goes on inside the building," the PTO noted in their application. "We have outstanding educators at SSMS and the students are great, and we want the outside to reflect the excellence inside the classrooms."

"The grant in Sulphur Springs represents Lowe's commitment to education," stated Larry D. Stone, chairman of Lowe's Charitable and Educational Foundation. "By supporting local schools like Sulphur Springs Middle School, we believe we are not only investing in community projects that are important to our customers and employees, but we're also helping schools build a stronger foundation for thee children who will be tomorrow's employees, homeowners and community leaders."

Lowe's offers Toolbox for Education grants of up to $5,000 during the  year for numerous improvement projects at up to 1,000 schools across the country. Parent groups can apply for the grant at www.ToolboxforEducation.com. All schools offering services for children from kindergarten through 12th grade in the United States are eligible.

"We are grateful to Lowe's for this funding, because this allows us to make the necessary changes to the outside of the building while using the funds raised during the year, from various fundraising activities, to add necessary instructional items to the classrooms," a PTO member noted upon receipt of the grant. "We want to be able give our teachers what they need to help them in their duties — educating our children. This grant will allow the SSMS PTO to be able to accomplish all goals for our school, both inside and out."

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