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School Notes: Foundations raise $ 3.4M; Sidewalk safety advocates push Metro; Students submitting artwork to Bonamici

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School foundations raise $3.4 million

Parent-run school fundraisers contributed $3.4 million in extra funding last year, $1 million of which will be given away as grants to Portland Public Schools for the 2016-17 school year.

Awards to 44 PPS schools and five alternative programs ranging from $12,000 to $35,000 will be used to enhance educational achievement.

All Hands Raised’s Parent Equity Fund collects a third of the parent-run campaigns that garner more than $10,000, to redistribute among those schools that do not have such robust organizations.

In the current school year, 341 PPS teachers and staff are funded in part or in full because of parental donations, according to a news release.

Advocates want $15 million for Safe Routes to School

The For Every Kid Coalition met again at the Metro Council Chamber last Thursday to demand $15 million for a Safe Routes to School program.

It was the last opportunity for public input on fund allocation at the Joint Policy Advisory Committee on Transportation, commonly called JPACT.

The Bicycle Transportation Alliance is backing the For Every Kid Coalition, arguing that kids need safe infrastructure like sidewalks, crosswalks and bike lanes for a healthy childhood.

Bonamici accepting kids’ art submissions

Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici (D-Beaverton) is now accepting submissions for the 2016 Congressional Art Competition.

The competition is open to all students in grades 9-12 who reside in or attend high school in Oregon’s First Congressional District, which includes Washington, Yamhill, Clatsop, and Columbia counties as well as part of western Multnomah County. A panel of local artists will select the winner, whose artwork will be publicly displayed for one year in the U.S. Capitol Building. Additionally, the Congressional Institute will fly the student artist whose artwork is selected and one guest to Washington D.C. for an award ceremony in June.

“As the co-founder of the bipartisan STEAM Caucus, I know that arts education helps students develop creativity and problem-solving skills,” said Bonamici in a statement.

Students in Oregon’s First Congressional District who are interested in participating can visit bonamici.house.gov/art. The deadline for submissions is April 15.