Supporting our schools is a community effort

There have been volumes written on what makes a good partnership. It takes vision, shared goals, commitments, and strategies to shape projects from concept to completion. Each of those words can be used to accurately describe the collaboration between Las Cruces Public Schools and the Las Cruces Public Schools Foundation, a nonprofit support organization that has raised money for teachers, classroom projects and students since 1998. Its sole purpose is to attract and manage private donations that enhance and enrich the educational experiences of students in the LCPS district. Outside of the foundation, there are ways our community can help too.

Recently, the LCPS Foundation unveiled a new logo and website. This fresh makeover is part of a re-dedication to support and enrich the educational environment for students, promote innovation in the classroom, increase community involvement in education and recognize excellence in teaching and learning.

One of the most direct ways the foundation impacts our students is through scholarships and other programs. This year there are 24 scholarship opportunities available to our graduating seniors, and the application process is simple. Students submit one application, which is then matched with a scholarship that will best support their career aspirations.  Funding, which ranges from $500 to $2,000, is available to students who plan to enroll in a higher-education curriculum in the fall of 2022. 

Another meaningful mission of the foundation is to provide resources to our teachers in the classroom.  To date, nearly $78,000 has been invested in LCPS classrooms through the foundation’s Innovative Teacher Grants and Teacher Classroom Supply Mini Grants. These monies are used for classroom supplies, resources and collaborative projects that enhance students’ educational experiences. Thanks to the generosity of our community members and local businesses, $40,000 has gone directly to teachers in this school year alone.

Raising money for these projects is where the fun happens, and the community is always welcome to be part of it. Come and flex your knowledge at Trivia Night, hosted by the foundation at The Game 2 on Tuesday, April 12. To register your team of four, text TriviaApril to 44321 by Monday, April 11. All proceeds benefit the $100 Teacher Classroom Supplies Mini Grants for LCPS educators. Can’t make it? The foundation has two more Trivia Nights coming up on June 8 and July 13. Winners are also eligible for cash prizes.

Later this month, the foundation is proud to partner with LCPS to highlight staff who are nominated for the annual LCPS Teacher of the Year and Educational Support Personnel of the Year. Through some of the most challenging times in public education, it has been a rewarding experience to honor our educators and support personnel who have kept our classrooms and school buildings going, ensuring our students persevere in a safe learning environment. This year, our nominees will be part of the Celebration of Excellence dinner on Friday, April 29 at the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum. If you would like to attend and support the foundation, please click here for ticket information.

Great partnerships in education are only as successful as those who support them. Together with our community, the mission of the LCPS Foundation has never been more promising. 

Brigitte Zigelhofer is the community outreach liaison at Las Cruces Public Schools and serves on the LCPS Foundation Board of Directors.