PORTLAND, Ore.--Oct. 2, 2001--Ever thought of creating an in-depth
lesson plan to teach your class about another country, the moon or a
famous painter? These are just a few ideas Portland teachers are
proposing for the Washington Mutual Bright Ideas Grant Program, and
the possibilities are endless. In partnership with the Portland
Schools Foundation, Washington Mutual will fund over $25,000 worth of
teacher grants this fall. Grant applications are available to all
teachers within the Portland public school district. The application
deadline is October 15, 2001.
"The goal of the Washington Mutual Bright Ideas Grant Program is
to provide support to public school teachers to encourage innovative
classroom instruction," said Charlotte Ellis, Washington Mutual's
consumer regional manager for Portland. "The grants, which are awarded
to teams of two or more teachers, promote collaboration between
educators in the development of curricula designed to raise student
The grants will fund initiatives that focus on literacy, teacher
professional development and other innovative projects. Over the past
three years, Washington Mutual has provided a combined total of over
$155,000 in funding to the Portland Schools Foundation. The
contribution has helped fund a variety of initiatives including the
development of the Five-Year Strategic Vision and Plan for Portland
schools and funds to launch a new Principal Leadership Institute.
Washington Mutual has long been a strong supporter of education
initiatives. In fact, this year alone, Washington Mutual's
contributions to education will total $12 million. In addition to
grants, a number of programs have been implemented such as the WaMoola
for Schools program in which $1 is donated to local schools for every
new checking account opened. School Savings is another program in
which Washington Mutual volunteers present a one hour mini class to
teach students the value of money.
For Bright Ideas Grant consideration, projects must be
teacher-initiated and focus on "best teaching practices." They must
also involve teams of two or more teachers working together to provide
a first-rate education. In addition to teachers, other educators such
as librarians, counselors and staff who work directly with students,
are invited to apply for the grants, which range from $500 to $2,500.
"As with all our strategic funding initiatives, the Bright Ideas
Grants will allow teachers to strengthen classroom instruction while
positively impacting student learning," said Ellen Bergstone Beer,
Portland Schools Foundation director of grants and administration.
"We anticipate the grants to provide constructive models for other
teachers to learn from and adapt into their own classrooms."
For additional application information concerning the Washington
Mutual Bright Ideas Grant, please phone Ellen Bergstone Beer of the
Portland Public Schools Foundation at 503/234-5404 x12 or visit the
foundation's site at www.portlandschoolsfdn.org
With a history dating back to 1889, Washington Mutual (NYSE:WM) is
a national financial services company that provides a diversified line
of products and services to consumers and small- to mid-sized
businesses. At June 30, 2001, Washington Mutual and its subsidiaries
had consolidated assets of $229.30 billion. Washington Mutual
currently operates more than 2,300 consumer banking, mortgage lending,
commercial banking, consumer finance and financial services offices
throughout the nation.
||Darcy Donahoe-Wilmot, 206/377-3635