Local poet and author Amy Ludwig VanDerwater will be presenting an interactive and informative program for students at Windom Elementary School on Thursday, April 26, and Friday, April 27.
According to a release from the Orchard Park School District, the students have been preparing for her visit by reading, performing and listening to her poems, and using her books as an inspiration for their own poetry.
VanDerwater is a writing teacher and children’s author.
Her poems appear in numerous anthologies, and she has published several children’s and professional books. Her publishing credits include “Forest Has A Song,” “Read! Read! Read!” and “Dreaming of You.”
In addition to her books, she writes and shares her poetry at her blog, The Poem Farm, www.poemfarm.amylv.com.
VanDerwater lives with her family and pets in Holland, New York.
Parent Teacher Organization, Principal Phil Johnson, faculty and staff, librarian Jim
Clark and the Orchard Park Foundation for Academic
Excellence have collaborated to make her visit possible.
" Throughout the last several years, the Orchard Park School District has implemented several cost-saving initiatives in order to offset rising costs and stay within the parameters of the tax cap. The district is also fortunate to have so many organizations that donate to help support our programs. The Orchard Park Foundation for Academic Excellence has donated tens of thousands of dollars since its inceptinon in 2001, including a 3-D printer, a laser engraver, fitness equipment, author visits, sound systems, biotechnology equipment and anti-bullying support to name a few of its many donations. We also receive many donations/ services from our parent teacher organizations, music boosters, athletic boosters and the Orchard Park Lions Club, and individual donors. "
Jack Fisher plays a vibraphone donated by the Orchard Park Foundation for Academic Excellence during A Grant Showcase at the Orchard Park Middle School
3 D Printer at Orchard Park Middle School funded by a grant from the Orchard Park Foundation for Academic Excellence
Librarians Jim Clark from Windom Elementary and Christina Carter from South Davis Elementary display books from author visits provided in part by the Orchard Park Foundation for Academic Excellence
OPFAE to hold meet-and-greet reception
The Orchard Park Foundation for Academic Excellence will hold a meet-and-greet reception from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Monday, March 4, at Orchard Park Middle School, 60 S. Lincoln Ave. The event will showcase the foundation and the projects it has funded through grants to the district. It will also serve to educate the community about the grant process, eligibility and timelines. The event is open to the public.
The Orchard Park Sun March 9 at 5:00 AM · Parents, school board members and donors got to see how students in the Orchard Park School District are benefiting from grant donations to each of the six schools in the district.
The Orchard Park Foundation for Academic Excellence held its first ever grant showcase reception Monday evening where roughly 30 attendees caught a glimpse of how the foundation’s donations improve the quality of education for Orchard Park students.Since its inception in 2001, the foundation has donated more than $133,000 to the school district, funding various initiatives like author visits, weight room equipment and a 3D printer.Read more about how the district is benefiting from the foundation's grants in this week's issue of The Sun.
by CHRIS GRAHAM
In an effort to aid 288 Orchard Park School District families, the Orchard Park Foundation of Academic Excellence has partnered with the district to conduct a fundraiser to provide grocery items.
The campaign — Orchard Park Families in Need of COVID-19 Assistance — began on May 8 with the goal of raising $28,800.
The foundation donated $1,000 to the campaign and will match donations up to 10% of the total goal.
As of press time, 91 individuals have donated for a total of $8,329
Money that is collected will go to the purchase of Tops gift cards. The hope is to provide each of the 288 families with a $100 gift card.
Rebecca McCauley, president of the foundation, said early in the quarantine she spoke with Superintendent Matthew McGarrity about any needs for students and families that were not being met.
After speaking with district personnel, it was relayed to McCauley that some families in the district were having trouble coming up with enough money for other meals that weren’t being provided by the district. The district was providing daily breakfast and lunch to those families who qualified.
McCauley said after some brainstorming on what to do, a GoFundMe page was presented and discussed.
“The response so far has been tremendous,” McCauley said. … “We’re just thrilled that people are responding as well as they are.”
It’s expected the fundraiser will be open until mid to late June. A link to the GoFundMe page will also be available on the district’s website, www.opschools.org.
McCauley said McGarrity told her that a number of district teachers and administrators would be interested in contributing to the cause.
She added that she can sense everyone in the community wants to help in some way.
“I think that when communities are faced with a crisis that’s something that they haven’t had to address before — and certainly we’re in that position now, it’s a very unique situation — it becomes almost necessary to help others that are in need because it makes you feel like you’re doing something to help in some small way or measure,” McCauley said. “I think this fundraiser will be evident of that. The Orchard Park community is very giving, and I think it will be natural for people to want to help out these 288 families that are really struggling. They’re our neighbors. They’re our community members. They’re families with children. I think it will show the good nature of the community of Orchard Park.”