By Noah Alatza
Maple Glen Elementary School teacher Crissy Stephan was one of 15 educators in Indiana to receive a grant and recognition at the 2018 Big Ten Football Championship game Dec. 1 at Lucas Oil Stadium.
The College Football Playoff Foundation partnered with the Big Ten Conference to fund educational initiatives across the state, selecting 15 teachers from various districts to provide funding to enhance teachers’ efforts in the classroom.
Stephan is an educator with 24 years of experience, 10 of which have been at Westfield Washington Schools. She said it was surreal when she found out she was selected for the grant.
“I was excited,” she said. “I went screaming down the hallway. It is just a really good feeling.”
After attending an educational conference, Stephan said she realized she needed more activities and supplies for her students.
The CFP Foundation grant is $6,000. Recipients are required to use the grants on DonorsChoose.org, a nonprofit that allows individuals to donate directly to public school classroom projects. Stephan plans to use the grant for her classroom and to fund other local teachers’ grants on the Donors Choose platform. Stephan will use $700 of the grant to purchase games for all MGES third-grade teachers to use during bonus time.
“We use bonus time for our students in areas we feel they need more help with,” she said. “I wrote a grant asking for some games, executive functioning, thinking and planning. It is situational awareness and that sort of stuff.”
The Big Ten worked with the Indiana Sports Corp to select the 15 teachers, with a goal of recognizing 15 schools in Indiana. Teachers were selected from kindergarten through eighth grade. Grants will assist them with educational projects.