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Schools Foundation honors award recipients

Tax money might provide a spartan diet of meat and potatoes for school programs, but any gravy has to come from outside sources. The Bremerton Schools Foundation poured more than $40,000 of gravy on this year’s programs and graduates.

Not only does the foundation fund scholarships for Bremerton graduates and provide grants to supplement programs in the schools, it also hosts an annual breakfast to honor the winners. Foundation members, award recipients and other interested parties gathered Tuesday at the Kitsap Conference Center to pass congratulations around.

One example of how the grants have helped in the past year is the SAT prep class that met for 12 weeks at Bremerton High School. Principal Aaron Leavell and career counselor Chris Swanson spoke about how successful the class was.

“Previously students had to go as far as Sea-Tac or Tacoma to take this kind of course,” Leavell said. “We had funding for 30 students, and we had 50 enroll.”

In stepped the foundation, and all 50 students were able to take the course for only a $25 fee, or even free in some cases. Similar classes cost $645.

Swanson reported student scores increased an average of 130 points from pre- to post-class testing.

“We can accept money and invest money that the school district can’t,” said foundation president Jack Cosby.

In addition to the grant and scholarship winners, Sharon Shrader was also recognized for her years of service to the foundation. “She’s the one who made all this possible,” Cosby said.

This year’s award winners received grants totaling $13,500, and scholarships adding to $27,860.

Grant recipients

Abbey St. Clair — Naval Avenue Elementary

Amy Hutchison — View Ridge Elementary

Julie Wasserburger — Naval Avenue Elementary

Dr. William Jones — Bremerton High School

Wendy McCrea, Mary Kjerstad

Pam Aromin and Diane Noyes — Armin Jahr Elementary

Gretchen Peters — Naval Avenue Elementary

Terri Agius, Tina Mahaney — Kitsap Lake Elementary

Gary Bertram — Bremerton High School

Jennifer Crane — View Ridge Elementary

Madonna Hanna — Bremerton High School

Carol Davis, Denise Burbidge and Leah Witherell — Crownhill Elementary

Scholarship winners

Monica Cowdery

Joe Curtis

Cathryn Grimes

Brent Kieszling

Katelynn Lorber

Megan Marek

Stephanie Melendrez

Teija Mortvedt

Jeremy Olson

Annie Rice

Chelsey Starkey

Anne Torgeson

Alejo Villa

Kori West

Chelsey Wheeler

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