Education foundation hosts nonprofit fair for Great Fish

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The Whitefish Education Foundation is inviting community members and organizations involved in the Great Fish Community Challenge to participate in a celebration of public education in Whitefish.

The education foundation will hold the event on Tuesday, Aug. 29 at 4 p.m. on the lawn of Whitefish Middle School. The foundation will promote its education partners during the event and with a brochure shared in the community.

Many participating organizations directly or indirectly support the public schools and the Whitefish Education Foundation wishes to thank them and the community of Whitefish for its support of public education, according to Gayle MacLaren, who serves as chair of the education foundation’s board.

The Whitefish Community Foundation hosts the Great Fish challenge, which features 45 nonprofits as part of a giving campaign.

“There is a lot of nonprofits that have a public education component,” MacLaren said. “The donors don’t always know about them and we want to give them an opportunity to learn about what they do.”

MacLaren described the Aug. 29 event as an open house fair that will give nonprofits the chance to explain their work involving education in the community.

The Whitefish Education Foundation works to enhance education in Whitefish Schools through the support of learning opportunities.

The foundation supports literacy efforts, including the Writing Coaches program. Volunteer writing coaches work one-on-one with students, coaching them through first and second drafts on writing assignments.

The foundation also supports Makerspaces. The middle school launched a Makerspace in fall 2015. This classroom and its collection of recyclables, tools, building toys, and art supplies is meant as an exploratory lab. Students experiment with simple structures, simple electronics, some robotics, and art projects.

In honor of long-time librarian and school board member, the late Pat Jarvi, a legacy was left for Muldown Elementary to start a Makerspace for the younger grades. The education foundation purchased carts for each grade level pod to support the program launch and teachers collaborated on a list of materials to incorporate a maker culture into their classrooms.

In June 2017, the foundation partnered with the Whitefish Community Library to launch early literacy parent and family workshops designed to provide parents of emerging readers the knowledge, skills, and resources they need to promote literacy in the home. Students, parents and family members take away books and other tools that help them have fun while building basic literacy skills that are the foundation of reading, writing, speaking and listening.

For more information, contact Gayle MacLaren at 406-862-5371.

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