Farmers National Bank Presents Check to
Elk County Community Foundation
Recently Farmers National Bank presented a $3,000 check to the Elk County Community Foundation. These funds will be included in the Educational Improvement Tax Credit Program (EITC) which then will make grants available to area public schools to support innovative educational programs that do not fall within the typical academic program. The funds for these innovative programs are administered and distributed through the Foundation, which has been designated to serve as an Educational Improvement Organization by the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development. During 2014 the Elk County Community Foundation awarded over $52,000 through the Educational Improvement Tax Credit Program . St. Marys, Johnsonburg and Ridgway Area School Districts were able to apply for grants for programming. These grants impacted nearly 3,500 students throughout the county.
This past year Johnsonburg School District replaced a computer cart with laptops and upgraded the wireless service at their Elementary school. One of the programs they use is “Study Island” which provides a lesson or video that the students are then tested on to see how much they retained. Another program, the students really seemed to like was called “Throw the Teacher” and it dealt mostly with math skills like multiplication and division. All in all, the students love using the laptops, each student has an assigned number for the computer they use and the privilege of using the laptops is reserved for the 6th graders and the cart house in the 6th grade wing of the school.
The Ridgway School District was able to purchase for each of their two buildings, HD video conference equipment, HD screen/projection devise and streaming continent input device. Their goal is to continue to enhance the technology experiences of their students. Students were able with this equipment to go on virtual field trips. There were a number of the virtual field trips/video conferences that their students have participated including a trip to NASA, San Diego Zoo, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Texas State Aquarium, Grand Teton National Park and the Holocaust Memorial Center where our students were able to interact with Holocaust survivors via video conferencing. The school also is utilizing the systems for recording and conferencing with school board meetings and presentations.
At St. Marys Area School District their goal is to continue to infuse 21st century technology into the classrooms for teacher and student access. This year the grant money provided by the EITC dollars provided the opportunity to expand their capacity of affording iPads to the elementary students for use in the classrooms. With the grant, 30iPads minis were purchased with a Powersync cart for the South St. Marys St. Elementary. Along with the iPads, a MacBook Pro 31 was purchased to use to sync all iPads with the same Apps. Finally the remainder of the grant was put towards the purchase of cases for the iPad minis. The iPads are being utilized in the elementary grades to deliver instructional intervention provide access to e-books, and to supplement instructional strategies with the classroom.
Any entity authorized to do business in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and subject to certain taxes is eligible to apply. Tax Credits are limited to 75% of the businesses contribution with a maximum of $750,000 annually. If a business agrees to make the same contribution for two consecutive tax years, it may receive a tax credit equal to 90% of its contribution.
If businesses wish to participate, they must submit a brief application to the DCED. The application can be found at www.inventpa.com. The Foundation also has applications and further information available to assist with the business application process.
Pictures are in Front(left to right): Craig Carrow and Richare Doverspike from Farmers National Bank, Paula Fritz Eddy from the Foundation and Heather Serefini from the Bank.