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District Blog

This is the official online blog for the Shorewood School District. All content is created and published by Shorewood School District staff. The purpose of the District blog is to disseminate important information to the public in a timely and accurate way. The blog does not publish public comments, but does invite site visitors to submit comments, which are sent by email to District staff. Comments provide the District and the School Board with important feedback from community members regarding the blog posts, and then District staff respond as necessary to the feedback received. While all submitted comments are reviewed, the District does not reply to every comment that is submitted. Thank you for reading our blog.


Grant Funding To Support Shorewood Athletics, Educational Programs

The Shorewood School District is excited to announce a major grant to support athletics and a matching grant to support educational initiatives.

A grant of more than $1 million to complete improvements to Shorewood High School’s Athletics Field Facilities and an additional matching grant of $500,000 to support STEM/STEAM and Expeditionary Learning at Shorewood Schools have been provided by an anonymous community foundation.

Pending approval from the Shorewood School Board, a grant worth $1,183,000 from the anonymous community foundation will support the completion of facility improvements at the Shorewood High School Athletics Field. These funds will be directed toward the following improvements:

  • Construction of New Concessions, Bathrooms & Team Rooms Under Current Bleachers
  • Construction of a Permanent, Small Masonry Booth on the Path to the Athletics Field
  • Track and Field Improvements, including Repainting Track Lines, High Jump Pit Installation, Pole Vault Pit Installation, Improvements to Long Jump Boards and Lines
  • Repaved Path to the Athletics Field and the Area Behind the Field
  • Landscaping and Physical Improvements

In addition to the grant to support the Shorewood High School Athletics Field Facilities, the anonymous community foundation has also offered a matching grant of $500,000 to support STEM/STEAM and Expeditionary Learning at Shorewood Schools. Receipt of this matching grant is dependent upon the Shorewood School District raising matching funds equal to $500,000 by December 31, 2015. The matching funds will support:

  • Expeditionary Learning Curriculum Implementation & Teacher Professional Development for Elementary Schools
  • Expeditionary Learning Experiences for Students: Trips, Travel, Exploration
  • STEM/STEAM Program and Curriculum Development & Teacher Professional Development for SIS & SHS
  • Support for Extracurricular STEM Activities, Student Team Registrations, Resources, and Travel for FIRST Robotics, Tech Challenge, Lego League, and Other Activities
  • New Maker Space for Innovation

The anonymous community foundation is an established, respected, and nonpolitical organization with a long history in philanthropy.

The Shorewood School District has been nationally recognized for its tradition of excellence in education. Shorewood High School was ranked the #1 public high school in Wisconsin in 2013 by U.S. News and World Report and has been named a Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education. The Shorewood School District was ranked #4 among all 427 school districts in Wisconsin by the 2015 Niche School Rankings. For more information, visit


Q: Regarding the $500,000 matching grant, what counts as matching funds?
The matching funds will need to come from external, philanthropic sources. Therefore, to meet the match, the district must raise an additional $500,000 through fundraising efforts by December 31, 2015 in order to receive the matching grant. If the district is able to raise $500,000 to successfully meet the matching grant amount, this would make the total combined amount raised $1,000,000.

Q: What happens if the district does not raise $500,000 in external, philanthropic funds by December 31, 2015?
If the district does not raise $500,000 in external, philanthropic funds by December 31, 2015, then the district will not receive the matching grant from the foundation.

Q: In the event that the district is unable to raise the full $500,000 in external, philanthropic funds by December 31, 2015, will the district be obligated or required to make up the difference through any expenditure of its own funding?
No. The district will not be obligated to invest any of its own funding to meet the match. In fact, the matching funds raised must be external and philanthropic to qualify as matching funds.

Q: Is the funding for STEM/STEAM and Expeditionary Learning intended to be used all at once, or will it be used over a period of time?
The funding is intended to help launch and support these programs over the next three years.

Q: How will the STEM/STEAM and Expeditionary Learning funding be used?
If the matching funds are successfully raised, the total $1,000,000 in funding will support: Expeditionary Learning Curriculum Implementation & Teacher Professional Development ($390K); Expeditionary Learning Experiences for Students: Trips, Travel, Exploration ($60K); STEM/STEAM Programming and Curriculum Development & Teacher Professional Development ($350K); New Maker Space for Innovation ($100K); New STEM Extracurricular Activities, including FIRST Lego League, Tech Challenge, Robotics, and Other Activities ($100K).

Q: What is a Maker Space?
A Maker Space is a space where students can design, build, create, invent, and learn. A Maker Space contains technology and equipment, such as 3D printers, milling machines, software, electronics, and other tools, which students can use to build prototypes and projects, and learn STEM-related skills and engineering design in the process of building and creating. This can be a space for both curricular and extracurricular STEM-themed activities and learning experiences.

Q: The announcement refers to STEM/STEAM – what does this mean?
Shorewood has used both terms — both refer to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics learning experiences, but the STEAM term adds “Art” – this demonstrates the role that Design and Art can play in engineering projects, technology development, and other work we associate with STEM, for example, the product design involved with the Apple iPhone.

Q: What is Expeditionary Learning?
Expeditionary Learning is exemplified by project-based learning expeditions, where students engage in interdisciplinary, in-depth study of compelling topics, in groups and in their community, with assessment coming through cumulative products, public presentations, and portfolios. The model emphasizes high levels of student engagement, achievement, and character development. Expeditionary Learning is based on the educational ideas of German educator Kurt Hahn, the founder of Outward Bound. In the U.S., there are currently more than 150 Expeditionary Learning Schools in 30 states and the District of Columbia. The organization Expeditionary Learning (EL) works with schools to design and implement the Expeditionary Learning programs. EL provides schools with curricular and instructional frameworks, along with strategies to change the culture of school communities. Lake Bluff and Atwater Elementary School teachers have been exploring Expeditionary Learning over the course of this school year.

Additional Questions?
Please contact Katelin Watson at or Ted Knight at with any additional questions.

Posted by kwatson on Monday April, 20, 2015


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District Calendar

    • TueFeb27 School Board Meeting 7:00 PM
    • TueMar13 School Board Meeting 7:00 PM
    • MonMar19 Advanced Learning Information Session 6:00 PMSHS Library

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