Monday, May 14, 2012

AMD Foundation Grant Funds Game and Film Design Summer Learning Opportunity at Martin and Mendez Middle Schools

We are pleased to announce that AMD and the AMD Foundation, in support of AMD Changing the Game, will be funding a cutting-edge, interdisciplinary game design program to be administered to Martin and Mendez Middle School students  through a collaboration with AISD’s ACE Afterschool Program and long-time community partner, Austin Film Society. Martin and Mendez will kick off the film and game design program with a three-week game design and filmmaking summer learning opportunity. This enrichment program will be co-taught by an AFS instructor and a certified teacher from each school. Armed with new technologies and newly-honed strategies, these teachers will integrate game design into their school-day lessons in the 2012-13 academic year.  Participating AFS instructors will do the same in their afterschool clubs, strengthening the connection between school-day learning and out-of-school time enrichment.

AMD’s generous grant will fund professional development for two AISD teachers and two AFS instructors.  Additionally, AMD will furnish Martin and Mendez with a set of laptops and all camera equipment, software and licensing associated with the program. The AMD Foundation has been a leading proponent of integrating  game design and education through AMD Changing the Game, an initiative designed to inspire youth to learn critical  science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills through the creation of video games around social issues. We are excited both by their generosity and foresight—AMD’s desire to bring  game design to the classroom of an ELA or Social Studies teacher gives us an opportunity to connect technology to topics not typically explore through digital activities.

Their commitment to high-quality, engaging STEM afterschool programs make Austin Film Society an ideal collaborator for this initiative, which would not be possible without Community Education Manager Katy Daiger Dial’s work building the grant proposal and general plan for the game design program.

In addition to giving AISD students an opportunity to participate in a truly innovative program, this summer learning opportunity is a way for the ACE Afterschool Program to address additional challenges that AISD struggles to overcome, like bridging the digital divide and combating summer recidivism.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Anonymous $1 million donation to benefit arts programs for AISD

Through an anonymous donation of $1 million, Austin Independent School District schools have a chance to apply for the Creative Classroom Fund brought to you by MindPop !

Read the story here:

Apply for the Grant here :

Monday, May 7, 2012

Connect it ! School/Business Partnership Event

The Office of Innovation and Development is ecstatic to announce the joint initiative between AISD, the Austin Council Parent Teacher Association (ACPTA), Austin Partners in Education (APIE), Teacher Heaven and Horace Mann

These groups have been working together to bring AISD schools the School/Business Partnership (SBP) Event, which has been designed to foster strong partnerships between schools, parents and the local business community with the following goals in mind:  

· Create an understanding of existing support networks that are available to schools and PTAs,
· Provide coordinated training on fostering School Business Partnerships to Principals and PTA leaders,
· Establish long term school and community relationships,
· Give school and PTA leaders the opportunity to practice building partnerships with local businesses,
· Create an avenue for equitable access of support resources across the district from local businesses in the community.

What: Connect it!: A School/Business Partnership Event
Where: The Delco Center, 4601 Pecan Brook Dr. Austin, TX 78724
When: May 9, 2012 from 12:30 to 3:30 PM 

This event started with just a question that has challenged the Austin community and its educators: How do we create equitable access for all schools in the Austin area with businesses and community organizations that are willing to support excellence in education?

Innovative small businesses, such as Teacher Heaven and Horace Mann, often support schools with teacher appreciation and school event sponsorships asked this question and set out on a mission to create an avenue for equitable access for School/Business Partnerships. Additionally, PTA members, who have always been instrumental in rallying up support from families and communities to advocate for students, wanted all schools to have the opportunity to begin increasing community resources. 

Their vision was realized when Teacher Heaven, Horace Mann, AISD, APIE and ACPTA became partners in coordinating an event that could begin a movement towards creating more School/Business partners across Austin. 

APIE, with their expertise and guiding mission to create and foster effective community and school partnerships that provide all AISD students preparation for college and career, were a perfect partner to answer the question of how do schools and communities get started on School Business Partnerships.
APIE has been a tremendous support for this event by providing training to principals, ACPTA leaders, and parent support specialists on how to develop School/Business Partnerships. 

With so many esteemed partners participating in this event, we hope that Connect it! becomes a valuable asset to the educational community in Austin that we will be able to provide annually. Strengthening the Austin education and business community will allow for philanthropic outreach, creation of goodwill, support, and community/school relationship building.

If you are interested in supporting schools or seeing how it can be done, we invite you to our School Business Partnership Event. We hope to see you there!

To get a preview of what you might see at the Event, please check out our Vendor List and Raffle giveaways below!

1379 Family Sports Store
A+ Federal Credit Union
Alamo Drafthouse Cinema
Austin Business Furniture
BBVA Compass Bank
Bicycle Sport Shop
Concordia University
Espinoza Chiropractic
Girl Scouts of Texas
Horace Mann
IDRA (Intercultural Development Research Association)
Keep Austin Beautiful
Kona Ice
Lesson Up Music
Liberty Tax Service
Lush Cosmetics
Mad Science
Nature's Classroom Institute
Rehab Sports Fitness
Say Cheese Photo Booth
Sendero Health Plans
Sustainable Food Center
Sylvan Learning Center
Teacher Heaven
The Blue Shoe Project
Water Monster

Giveaways and Raffle Prizes
Gift Certificates
Visa Gift Cards
Ergonomic Chairs
School Supply Baskets
T shirts
Discount and Coupon Cards
Goodie Bags
Back to School Breakfasts