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Donation To Aid STEM Learning, Teachers

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Donation To Aid STEM Learning, Teachers
Posted on 01/06/2021
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EnviroLogix, a Portland-based diagnostic company, gave two grants totaling $16,000 in late 2020 to the Foundation for Portland Public Schools (FPPS) through the EBI Foundation, their parent organization’s (Ensign-Bickford Industries) charitable fund. With a focus on fostering innovation in the classroom, these grants will enhance learning experiences and support the goals of the Portland Public Schools’ strategic plan, the Portland Promise.

Half of these funds are intended to support FPPS Equity and Innovation Teacher Grants, a program that distributes $50,000 in small grants to Portland Public Schools staff each fall. The other half is designated for the district’s STEM initiatives, including the annual STEM Expo, which is a chance for PPS students to showcase their STEM projects and to see and hear about the STEM work happening at businesses and organizations in Greater Portland. This fall, the 7th annual STEM expo was a virtual event, but still drew hundreds of students and community members in a range of live and pre-recorded sessions online.

Brooke Teller, the STEM coordinator for the Portland Public Schools, said, “Support from community partners like EnviroLogix helps PPS to inspire students and teachers in STEM education.  Their sponsorship of the PPS STEM EXPO and STEM Teacher grants are examples of how these partnerships translate into concrete experiences for our whole student body.”

EnviroLogix President and CEO Bill Welch said, “EnviroLogix has a long history as a pioneer in our field of diagnostic technology, and we are excited each year to help bring that spirit of applied innovation to the students of Portland Public Schools. An investment in the education and inspiration of future generations is critical both to the growth of our community and to our success as a company.”

EnviroLogix has been a strong supporter of the Portland Public Schools for years. In addition to support for the Teacher Grants program and the STEM Expo, EnviroLogix and the EBI Foundation partnered with the Portland Arts and Technology High School (PATHS) in 2018-19 to co-design and fund the creation of a biotechnology/biomedical laboratory at the school that is used by both students in PATHS’ Health Science Occupations Program as well as students from Casco Bay High School, housed in the same building.

About Envirologix and the EBI Foundation

Founded in 1996 and based in Portland, ME, EnviroLogix is an industry leader in the development and manufacturing of tests for the rapid detection of GMOs and mycotoxins throughout the worldwide food production chain. A subsidiary of Ensign-Bickford Industries, Envirologix works with the EBI Foundation to support a wide variety of causes that foster education, health, and prosperity in the communities in which its employees live and work.

About the Foundation for Portland Public Schools                                                                                 

The mission of the Foundation for Portland Public Schools is to raise philanthropic support to enhance educational opportunities for present and future students in Portland's public schools. The Foundation’s work is closely aligned with the Portland Promise, the comprehensive plan of the Portland Public Schools. Accordingly, the goals for support, enrichment, and fundraising are student achievement, equity, attending to the needs and development of students as whole people, and developing a robust, diverse, and supported staff at every school in the city.

About the Portland Public Schools

The Portland Public Schools is Maine’s largest school district, with 6,500 students, and is also the most diverse. About one-third of the district’s students come from homes where languages other than English are spoken—a total of more than 60 languages. 52 percent of the district’s students are white and 48 percent are students of color. Approximately half of PPS students qualify for free or reduced school meals.

For more information, contact FPPS Executive Director Andrea Weisman Summers at 207-400-1151 or asummers@foundationforpps.org.