The GHSEF provides a grant to purchase books for students participating in the club.  The grant allows the students to select books that are of interest to them, without any limitations.  Without the grants, the club would be restricted to books that MCPS has 20+ copies available, or every student would have to purchase books on their own.

“The GHS Education Foundation has been instrumental in keeping our book club going. Because of your support, we have a place where students read for pleasure, treat each other with mutual respect, find new friends, and have a place to share their concerns.” – Joycelyn Nelson, Media Assistant, club sponsor

“Book club has been a great experience. Every meeting we have is full of joy, and it is just a comfortable place to be. The people there are like family. Before joining the book club, school was very stressful with AP classes. But after joining the book club, I was able to read books and de-stress from all the work I get. I am very grateful for being able to be part of this family and have the opportunity to meet wonderful people.”

“Book club is a very comforting and inclusive space for young readers. Here we expand our minds through exposure to new literature as well as learning about each other. At book club, I feel accepted and appreciated to be 100% who I am.”

“The Gaithersburg High School Book Club is like a family to me. We look out for each other even when we are not at the meeting. We share our thoughts without fear, and everyone gets the opportunity to talk. Sometimes we take what is happening in the book and compare it to each other life experiences. When I started with the Book Club, I thought it was going to be about books and only books, but I have learned so much this year about reality and that I am not the only teenager who has the experiences that I have in life.”

This conference was hosted by the Adolescent Peer Support League, a nonprofit organization that seeks to provide peer support for mental health among adolescents and increase awareness among adults and organizations about the mental health challenges faced by youth.

“I received a significant number of resources (too many to include!) from different vendors and sponsors that I can pass along to students at GHS, including crisis information, how to help friends with mental health needs, etc.”  —  Batya Toso, Student Intervention Specialist

“GHSEF’s support was critical, because it was only through your funding that I was able to attend the conference.”  — Batya Toso

This was a Statistics Teacher Conference that will support all of my AP Statistics students in the 2019-2020 year.

“I spent four 8-hour days experiencing, critiquing, and creating lesson plans centered around the ‘experience first, formalize later’ format.”  — Jordan Weissberg, AP Stats teacher

“Yes, I consider this to have been a success. If this conference were to be modified for other subjects in the future I would recommend more teachers attending.”

Training program for 25 students to become certified “first aid” peer counselers in mental health issues.

“Receiving the grant for the UMTTR club was a wonderful experience for the members. We received a wonderful training with fantastic facilitators who allows us to understand the importance of human connections when helping teens and young adults who are living with mental health issues.”  — Paula Martindill, GHS teacher & club sponsor

Grant provided for Visual Arts teacher to attend Photoworld, a conference for Photoshop users in Las Vegas, NV.

“The event was amazing, I was able to learn so many new techniques and will be able to teach my [visual arts] students great new ways to do things.”  — Nilda Keres, GHS teacher

Funding provided for the printing costs of the 2019 Edition of “Out of the Blue,” the GHS literary magazine.  This grant supported the work of the Creative Writing class, which consisted of 20 students first semester and 18 students second semester.

“A literary magazine was created that showcased the students creative writing. It contained poetry, science fiction, memoirs, and short narratives that reflected several current themes important to today’s youth. Class lessons were taught in order to improve student writing and prepare them to submit work worthy of publication.” – Adam Webber, GHS teacher

GHS Education Foundation was “very supportive” of the program.  “We could not have done it without you” – Adam Webber, GHS teacher

Funding provided for the cosmetology class to attend the International Beauty Show in New York, New York.  This field trip was a completion of all the curricular requirements: to visit a professional venue, products, learning, classes and watching other professional express their creativity.    

Some of the feedback from the students included:

“This was the first time being in New York City”

“It was great to see the different styles and designs by may cosmetologists”

“I saw a barber create an image of Selena on someone’s head, it was amazing.”

“I was exposed to more tools that were better than the ones in my local area.”

“They had every hair tool you could possibly imagine: flat irons, curling irons, wands, etc.”

“I strongly believe that this show should start being an annual requirement. It shows you what it feels to really be a cosmetologist and opened my eyes.”

“I love the field even more after this show”.

“I learned to always build your skills because that is how you earn more money and there’s always room for improvement.”

“It was a great learning and inspiring trip.”

“As a student, I feel it provided more clarity to my perception of the industry and I want to finish the program next year.”

“They had tons and tons of different products.”

“We saw other cosmetology students from different places.”

“They had classes on color techniques, hair cutting, products, etc on a higher level than our experience and they had different booths selling everything we would use in the industry.”

“Interacting with the professional taught us how the adult professionals work together, it was like our own community.”           

“The students thoroughly benefited from the field trip, to an environment where they would not normally have gone on their own.  … [Students were] totally exhausted from the excitement and possible opportunities for them once completing their course work, state boards, and finding a salon in which to work and building clientele.”

“For these Gaithersburg students, going from high school into the professional world, [this trip portrayed] their possible futures.  It was a very inspirational trip.” — Ms. Beryl Bell, RT for the Cosmetology Department

“I was surprised about the number of kids who were interested in our booth. Even middle schoolers were enjoying our booth. I wish we would have had another table to accommodate the amount of kids we had crowding around. Throughout the day parents complimented our booth idea. I also think we gained exposure for SNHS because people were asking about our chapter.”
– Charmaine Pfinayi

“It was really fun to interact with the kids. The presentation was well thought out, even some parents said it was the best booth they had seen.”
– Elisabeth Solomon

” The experience was fun and it seemed to be really enjoyable to the kids. I was glad that all of our preparation seemed to pay off because the kids really had a good time.” 

“What I liked the most about the festival was the kids and parents asking more questions about DNA. It’s a great experience to teach others. I honestly enjoyed the festival and helping/teaching the children making bracelets and drawing monsters.”

Thanks for everything!! It truly was a memorable experience and the SNHS members were really dedicated and helpful.

Kelly Hoffman
Gaithersburg High School
Science National Honor Society Advisor

Taking 200 students on a field trip is no easy task, but the generous help that you so graciously [provided] made it much easier for our students to be on this trip.  It was so apparent they were so engaged in the production of Romeo & Juliet at the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company in Baltimore.  The theater is built around a stage to replicate the Globe in Oxford, England.  The actors were so engaging with the audience and it was truly pleasing for our students to attend.  It was so good I intend to visit again next year.  Thanks again for your generous donation!

– Jeanne Clay

The GHS Education Foundation has been instrumental in keeping our book club going. It was difficult to find and borrow enough books to support our growing numbers. We urgently needed funds to purchase books so that no student would go without, due to financial need.  With the financial support of GHSEF, we are able to continue promoting the love of reading. Students are beyond excited to receive their new books and so eager to spend the day reading. Thank you GHSEF!

– GHS Book Club

Student Testimonials:

“The book club has permitted me to grow as a person. I’ve had the opportunity to work on public speech and analyze various texts in a discussion. In analyzing texts, I have learned how to better pick out key information. The relationships that I’ve made with my peers is refreshing. I would not have met some of the people I did, without this club. It’s too bad that not that many people are interested in such an amazing activity though. However, enough people are in the club that conversation easily flows.“

“The book club has benefited me because it has allowed me to meet other people that love reading as much as me. Also, I feel much more accepted and normal knowing that there are book lovers in my school. It has also broadened the genres I read, and the books we choose to read have taught me very much about how to be a better person.”

“I really like how we engage in interesting conversations on the books that we read. The books are also interesting and usually are different from what I would normally read on my own.”

“The Book Club has allowed me to structure reading time into my schedule that I otherwise wouldn’t do. Life can get so busy at times that I often forgot about my love for reading. Being in the book club has enabled me to read new genres and given me the opportunity to share my thoughts and opinions as I read.”

“The book club provides a space where people can bond over a common medium, a medium that seems to be becoming less appreciated over the years. It brings forward a place that not only reinvigorates an endangered pastime but also brings together all sorts of people and allows them to collaborate and grow together. All in all, it’s just a good time.”

First, thank you so much for graciously supporting our endeavor to attend the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) 2018 professional teachers and leaders conference! We had a wonderful time. This was my return visit to the ASCD conference as Tracy Grimaldo and Molly Donnellan were first time attendees. The sessions we attended individually and collectively were replete with information necessary to further build upon our teaching and learning capacities! Having an opportunity to sit among, dialogue, and glean from teachers, teacher leaders, principals, district leaders, and superintendents from around the nation and world was invigorating! We each walked away from the conference armed with strategies applicable to our respective ESOL classes and just the boost needed to finish the school year at GHS strong!

From our pictures below you can see we took advantage of the good weather and toured Boston after our sessions. We visited familiar sites such as Boston Commons, the Freedom Trail, and the state house. We culminated our stay with a visit to Harvard University and deposited our continued hopes and dreams for our students there! In a few words, the experience was amazing and the best is yet to come! Again, thank you for investing in our endeavor! We are grateful!

ESOL Educators,
Belinda Campbell, Molly Donnellan, and Tracy Grimaldo