Dewey Elementary – 7/27/15
The Point Loma Optimist Club is focused on the children of our community. We work with the local schools and organizations that provide services to the young people of Point Loma and Ocean Beach. From ball fields to musical instruments, scholarships to scout projects and essay contests to oratorical challenges, the Point Loma Optimist Club looks for ways to bring out the best in our children.
Dewey Elementary is one of six elementary schools in the Point Loma cluster and is comprised of mainly military dependent students. They are a Title 1 school with a 73% population of Free or Reduced Lunch rate. The military families attending Dewey are ranked E6 and below, which results in very young families who do not have significant incomes. Unlike all other elementary schools in Point Loma, Dewey does not have a Foundation and their PTO raises about $6,000 annually, which is used to keep their library open a few hours per week.
In addition, Dewey offers before and after school care, has 13% Special Ed students and 45% of their students are English as a Second Language. Dewey has 380 students in the K-4 grade levels. And, because of limited state funding, and no significant local funding options, Dewey cannot offer any enrichment programs, like art, music, dance or other specialty programs.
On Monday, July 27th, the Point Loma Optimist Board of Directors visited with six teachers and Tanya McMillin, Principal of Dewey Elementary, in response to their Grant Request. The request was for funding to start a Science/Math Lab at the school. The items needed include furniture, equipment and supplies. Dewey would provide a dedicated classroom and appoint super-star teacher, Kyp Scalero, formerly a science lab teacher for elementary schools, to gather volunteers, write and share the curriculum school wide. Kyp holds a credential in Science and has been chosen to work on the SDUSD team looking at Next Generation Science Standards. Every student at Dewey would be able to experience the Science/Math Lab, with a minimum once per week visit. And, Dewey parents and friends would pay the cost of annual consumables used in the lab. The total request was for $18,600
After a lengthy discussion with the teachers and Tanya McMillin, the Board thanked them and began a private discussion regarding the request. The discussion was short and focused! We invited Principal McMillin back into the room and told her the Board would support a $19,000 Grant to the Dewey Elementary School for their Science/Math Laboratory! Efforts are underway to bring the Science/Math Laboratory to life for the children to experience this fall!
Congratulations Dewey Elementary! We are proud to support you, your students, teachers, principal and parents. We can’t wait to see the final product!