Northern Beaufort County educators awarded nearly $3,000 in grants

info@islandpacket.comOctober 24, 2013 

Foundation board member Herman Gaither presents a grant to Beaufort Middle School teacher Tricia Fidrych (right) on Thursday. They are joined in the photo by Principal Carol Ingram (left) and students.


Six teachers were awarded nearly $3,000 Thursday by the revitalized Northern Beaufort County Public Education Foundation.

Founded more than 20 years ago, the foundation was brought back in 2012 after several years of inactivity.

"It's an exciting day when we can surprise the winning teachers in their classroom and hand them their check," said Jim Grimsley, the foundation's chairman, in a news release. "We want them to put the money to use right away to help their students."

The foundation awards grants to teachers in public schools in northern Beaufort County. Those schools "historically have not had the outside support enjoyed by schools in other parts of the county," Grimsley said.

Since 2012, the foundation has distributed more than $13,000 in grants.

On Feb. 20, the foundation will host Artscapade at ArtWorks in the Bi-Lo shopping center on Boundary Street in Beaufort to help raise money to distribute to teachers.

Receiving an average award of $464, Thursday's grant winners were: Shannon Duffy of Riverview Charter School, Tricia Fidrych of Beaufort Middle School, Kelly Goudy of St. Helena Elementary, Julie McKay of Whale Branch Early College High School, Eve Weaver of St. Helena Elementary and Makela Wilson of Battery Creek High School.

"It's a wonderful feeling to come into a teacher's classroom and tell them they've won a grant to help them teach," said Laura Eggers, a member of the foundation's board of directors. "It's rewarding for the (foundation), but we know it's even more rewarding to the teacher and students."

The foundation is seeking sponsors for grants and for the annual Artscapade event. For information, contact Grimsley at 524-1116 or Williams Group PR's John Williams at

The group encourages donations to be sent to the Northern Beaufort County Public Education Foundation, P.O. Box 486, Beaufort, SC 19901.

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