Brian Scott, Denton County Reporter
The Northwest Education Foundation gave out its annual Innovative Teaching Grants so that teachers could better educate students.
The Northwest Independent School District handed out 51 grants to teachers on Friday.
The NWISD Education Foundation distributed $181,905.88 in grant money. Teachers received grants this year for projects ranging from weather-monitoring equipment to musical instruments.
"Any teacher can write a grant for a project that's innovative and a little bit different and something that the normal school budget doesn't cover," said Kim Schultz, the foundation's executive director.
In the 14 years of the project, the grants have funded new technology, books and ideas that teachers want to bring into their classrooms.
It's earned the district a reputation as one of the most innovative in the nation.
"It's probably the most exciting part of what we do," Superintendent Karen Rue said. "The teachers know that somebody cares about what they do, that they think enough of what they do that they're willing to fund it."
But the teachers say the grants are really for the students -- to advance their learning and give them the best opportunities for a technology-driven world.
"It is absolutely critical that kids get to learn in digital formats, and the foundation is a huge part in making that happen," Rue said.
The foundation raises money through private donations and then matches those funds for the grants.