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Over $100,000 in New Grants Help Cranford Students Learn, Serve

Schools receive an $85,000 award from Learn & Serve America for service programs.

New grants to Cranford Public Schools are improving the education students receive by improving the service they provide to others. 

The centerpiece: an $85,000 award from Learn & Serve America (LSA) for the year 2009-10, estimated to pay the district an additional $100,000 for the 2010-11 and 2011-12 school years.

The Service-Learning Regional Center Grant (SLRC), which follows over $200,000 in service-learning grants won by the district in the past five years, was likewise prepared by the district’s Manager of Grants & Special Programs, Stephen F. Izzo, and is one of only three, awarded in the state of New Jersey. 

It makes Cranford Public Schools a Regional Service-Learning Center, supporting schools and other non-profits in New Jersey’s central region as a service-learning mentor, information clearinghouse and provider of professional development for teachers. A major end-goal of the program is to encourage young people to pursue further education, training and roles serving others. 

“Learn & Serve has and continues to help our students do just that,” said Izzo. “We thank them for enabling us to help other districts and non-profits in central New Jersey formulate and improve service-learning initiatives.”

Funds for the grant are provided by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), a federal organization promoting service-learning activities through Learn & Serve America, AmeriCorps and the Senior Corps.  The grant will continue to support service efforts at Cranford High School (HolidayFest), Brookside Place School (Stamp Out Hunger), Livingston Avenue School (Bringing Nature Indoors) and Walnut Avenue School (Outdoor Classroom), as well as during National Make a Difference Day, MLK Day of Service and Youth Service Day.

Other grants awarded this summer and programs supported include those from:

  • Exxon Mobil Corporation ($1,000—math/science initiatives);
  • Target Corporation ($3,000—Peer Leadership Program);
  • CVS Foundation ($1,500—SNAPPY Program);
  • Over $8,000 in grants funding the Cranford School District Academy (CSDA)—a weekend remedial program helping students overcome severe reading issues.

Recent grantors to the CSDA include:

  • The Friends of the Cranford Public Library ($1,875),
  • Elberon Development Corporation ($1,875),
  • Investors Saving Bank Foundation ($1,000),
  • The United Way of Greater Union County ($3,500). 

Beyond this, the following donors provided nearly $6,000 in funds/goods to the district this summer, defraying costs associated with the restoration of historic murals discovered at Cranford High School, professional development and special services:

  • A&J Automotive
  • Breen's Discount Wines & Liquors
  • Cranford Family Practice
  • Cranford Fire Department
  • Fink, Rosner Ershow-Levenberg, LLC
  • Gary S. Cutler, D.M.D.
  • Gutterman Services
  • Jaclo Industries
  • Kilkenny House Restaurant & Pub
  • Kleespies & Associates, LLC
  • Mary Rose and Richard Duffield
  • Mears & McCullough, CPAs
  • Miriam P. Moody
  • Pamela & Peter Crane
  • Pizza House
  • QDx Pathology Services
  • Ray Catena Mercedes-Benz of Union
  • Rosenberg, Neuwirth & Kuchner, CPAs
  • Shop Rite of Garwood
  • Simpson & Brown, Inc.
  • Tony's Café of Cranford
  • Welby Brady & Greenblatt, LLP
  • Verizon Corporation, which donated over $3,000 in back-to-school supplies.

Those interested in learning more about grants and special programs supporting Cranford Public Schools can contact Mr. Izzo at 908-709-6207 or izzo@cranfordschools.org.

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