Every year, Friends of North Springs (FONS) gives out thousands of dollars for grants to various classes. FONS has granted 11 unique grants this year, with them ranging from video cameras for broadcasting to response clickers for classrooms to cameras for The Oracle staff. In the beginning of the year, teachers can apply for grants, and after review by FONS, they usually get approved. “FONS has two teacher grant cycles – fall and spring,” commented Sandra Jewell, President of FONS. She continued, “Usually we can fund much of what teachers have requested.” To see the full list of grants for Fall 2014, click here.
In addition, FONS is working on renovating the media center. Lory Cox, the head media specialist commented on it, “I think it needs to be a huge priority. It has the potential to impact every student in the school. The media center is a central location in the school.” FONS has raised a little over 9,000 dollars so far, and they hope to raise around 20,000 dollars. “Although we currently have a United Way goal of $20,000 for the Media Center, that is only a starting point. Our plan is to use these funds to create sample areas of what the renovation could look like. The cost of fully upgrading the Media Center will cost $300,000 and $350,000 (estimate),” remarked Jewell after some questioning on potential costs. FONS does lots of fundraising throughout the year, including their biggest fundraiser, the “Spartan Spectacular”, formerly known as the Gala. It is an annual event.
With the money raised throughout the year, FONS has some ambitious plans for the upgrade of the media center. They want to, “support more personalized learning and create an environment that supports both team and individual work and study,” added Jewell. In terms of what they want to add, it includes, “Private glassed-in small group work areas with wall monitors, comfortable seating for reading or individual computer work with electrical access, computer “bars” with tall chairs, separate computer work areas for two classes, a meeting area for 10-12 people with sink and microwave, a high tech lab area, and a mediascape with dual monitors, couches with attached bar seating on the back of the couches, and tall tables and chairs,” detailed Jewell.
Throughout the school, there is strong support from students over plans to renovate the media center. “I think that it would be very beneficial to upgrade the media center. It is lacking in some cases, and I think upgrading it would make it more of a hotspot. I would support it,” commented Tyneisha Johnson, a sophomore.