Westgate Fund Awards $5,000 to Chatham Elementary School

Three teachers and school psychologist won grant...
Michael Westgate announcing the grants at Thursday night’s School Committee Meeting. (Courtesy of MRSD)

The Westgate Teacher Fellowship Fund award for 2019 goes to three teachers and the psychologist at Chatham Elementary School. They will be going to Canada in November 2019 to participate in the New Pedagogies for Deep Learning (NPDL) Lab in Toronto and to visit exemplary schools in Ottawa and Montreal.

The teachers are Meghan Lampert, Elise Johnson-Dreyer, Mia Caolo and school psychologist Nicole Camp. The award of $5,000 is the largest given in the 35 year history of the Westgate Fund. It will cover the expenses of this four-person “scouting party” to observe first-hand the ways in which Deep Learning experiences can be implemented in the classroom. While all Monomoy principals were invited to indicate interest in participating, it was the initiative taken by Dr. Robin Millen, principal at Chatham Elementary School, that led to the selection of these teachers.

NPDL focuses on the six C’s, character education, citizenship, collaboration, communication, creativity, and critical thinking. It is the hope of the Westgate Committee, Dr. Millen and the scouting party, that the lessons learned by these teachers will be shared throughout the district.

One previous award by the Westgate Committee enabled a team of teachers from Harwich Elementary School to visit the New School in St. Louis, MO, to learn about Using Students’ Multiple Intelligences. Another went to a team of two teachers observing earth sciences in Hawaii. The day of their arrival they experienced a tropical storm, an earthquake, and erupting lava. The 7th grade students of one teacher then taught the 3rd grade students of the other about earth sciences. WestgateFund.org is the website for details on past grants and the procedure to apply for future grants.

Westgate Teacher fellowships are made to Chatham and Harwich public school teachers to further their own educations. The principle in the fund currently stands at $140,000. Interest on the principle, augmented by current donations, has enabled the Fund to award more than 70 fellowships totaling $150,000 over the last 35 years. Fellowships have ranged from $500 to $1500 per teacher.

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