Challenge grant update and fall fundraiser for Big Park Community School

Last summer, our Big Park Community School took the first step toward becoming an International Baccalaureate World School.

That first step was teacher training, and the community came together with donations sufficient to train our Big Park Community School teachers for the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program.

The teachers so appreciated the opportunity for professional development that each teacher penned a personal thank you note to their sponsor. Additionally, they and the Parent Teacher Student Association held an appreciation reception for the donors, followed by a tour of classrooms where teachers explained what they learned from the training.

We also saw a need to ensure that funds would be available for the Application Fee ($4,000), (which a generous and anonymous Village donor has contributed), as well as the Annual Fees ($8500) which will become due in May 2018.

The Annual Fee provides access to the International Baccalaureate Organization's Curriculum and Research Centers. Small school districts such, as the Sedona Oak Creek School District, lack funds to support their students and teachers with these essential services that greatly contribute to the quality of teaching and learning in the classroom.

Teachers say having access to both centers is the most important aspect of being an IB school. Now Big Park students will receive what is regarded around the world as the 'gold standard' of education.

To ensure that the Annual Fees would be available, Big Park’s Vision Alliance established a community Challenge Grant with a donation pledge of $4,250, subject to raising the balance from our community.

The Vision Alliance, led by Bev Copen, is pleased to report that as of this writing we have obtained contributions of over $2600, with only $1600 to go.

We ask that you make a contribution to the Challenge Grant to ensure that the annual fees for the International Baccalaureate program will be available when due.

Readers can direct your federal tax deduction contribution to the Sedona Village Main Street Partnership, writing on the memo line: Vision Alliance Challenge Grant. Village residents may also make contributions via your homeowners’ association representative to the Big Park Regional Coordinating Council, or by contacting davidhgill@gmail.com.

This contribution can be made at any time of the year. This contribution is separate from the Arizona Kids Tax Credit program whose funds are destined for after school activities. Contributions to the Village Alliance Challenge Grant do not qualify for the Arizona Kids Tax Credit Program.

Other exciting news from the Community is that the new Village Rotary International satellite chapter has begun active work on a Fall fundraiser for our Big Park Community School. The fundraiser will take place early in October, and will consist of a live and silent auction, a ball drop from a helicopter, and a few days of hole-in-one challenges at the Sedona Golf Resort.

The goal is to raise between $15,000 and $20,000 for our community school.

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