From ukeles to science labs: foundation supports Davie initiatives

Published 4:58 pm Wednesday, October 5, 2022

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Community Funds make up one third of the Davie Community Foundation.

“This is good news for Davie County as the Community Funds create a terrific source of capital to meet challenges and opportunities in Davie, today and always,” said Jane Simpson, president and CEO. “This year, the Davie Community Foundation has awarded grants for projects in the areas of Education, Food/Poverty, and Parks/Enrichment totaling $271,464.”

What kinds of projects are receiving grants?

Since the Mebane Charitable Foundation is providing support to Davie County Schools for reading enhancements, the Davie Community Foundation chose to support other educational projects.

• Cognition of Davie, $30,000 on a sliding scale for four years to assist the organization in building a customer base to provide future operating support. This grant is the second year. Cognition has seen an increase in visitors and supporters for the organization, Simpson said.

• Cognition of Davie, $15,383 for the purchase of STEAM tools and equipment for use in the Makerspace. This will allow an increase in class sizes, provide more opportunities for public use, and provide early exposure to STEAM concepts for youth in Davie and the surrounding counties.

• Davie County Schools, $15,000 for a STEM Pipeline Summer Camp for rising 7th and 8th-grade students to increase interest and performance in STEM-related studies leading into high school science and math.

• Davie County Schools, $40,000 to purchase Hands on Pitsco Labs for all sixth and seventh grade classes.With the goal of bridging learning gaps in math and science, Davie Schools is investing in the labs for middle school technology CTE classrooms. Pitsco STEM labs have been shown to increase student confidence and skills in math and science through the alignment of standards and hands-on activities.

• Davie County Schools, $26,400 for leadership development and executive coaching. Davie County believes developing leaders for schools and the district is important, Simpson said. They have seen a positive impact on the school principals who have participated in prior years, and chose to ensure all school leaders had the opportunity.

• Davie County Schools, $3,250 to provide professional development to  K-8 math teachers and instructional coaches. Staff will have professional development opportunities through NCCTM at the State Mathematics Conference.

• North Davie Middle School, $6,000 for registration for “House System” Conference. Funds were used to send staff to Atlanta to attend the Ron Clark Academy, HouseCon. After returning from the interactive, immersive experience, participants returned to North Davie with new energy and enthusiasm for creating a House System for their school. They couldn’t wait for the new year to start, Simpson said.

• Smart Start of Davie, $9,000 for Nurturing Parents parenting classes to families who have young children prenatal to 5 years old. The objective ois to promote zero tolerance for the maltreatment of children. Each class is designed to educate while strengthening the protective factors of families in the community.

• South, North, Ellis Middle and Davie High, $10,000 for The Book is Better Project that supports collection development that capitalizes on the popularity of series and movies featured on streaming services based on tween/teen books. Adding these titles allows students to discover that the book is better, Simpson said.

• IGNITE DAVIE College Promise, year 4 of 5 of  $20,000 donation. The total commitment is $100,000. “Post-secondary education remains a high priority for the foundation,” she said.

• Cooleemee Elementary School, $5,000 in honor of Larry Coble’s leadership development with the Cooleemee Town Board. After learning about the challenges facing staff at Cooleemee Elementary, Dr. Coble requested that the school receive a grant in lieu of paying consulting fees for his work with the town board.

• Davie County Schools Cooleemee and Pinebrook, $1,833 for ukuleles. They were the only elementary schools in Davie without ukuleles for the school music program. The grant provided funding to purchase a class set of 30 to provide students with the hands-on opportunity for active engagement in making music, especially songs that they enjoy beyond the school classroom.

To date, the Davie Community Foundation has invested $181,866 in rducation.

“We believe these are important investments that will one day lead to a better educated workforce and community,” Simpson said.

To learn more, contact Simpson at (336) 753-6903 or or visit