2022 Innovation and Leadership Grants Reception

February 3, 2022 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

“Being an educator is never easy but the last two years have been an adventure and you have risen beyond the challenge,” reflected Most Reverend Frank J. Caggiano to the Catholic school educators awarded 2022 grants in innovation and leadership.

“Tonight is a festival of creativity and imagination and thinking beyond what is before us; stretching the limits and looking at new horizons,” added Bishop. “The fact that you took the time to create innovative grants to the benefit of our young people is another testimony of the great educators that you are.”

The awards reception, hosted by Foundations in Education, was held at Sacred Heart University’s Discovery Museum, on Thursday, February 3rd.

Foundations in Education is pleased to announce twenty-three grant awards totaling $142,000 to benefit Catholic schools in the Diocese of Bridgeport. In its 5th year, this competitive program was the first of its kind to offer innovation and leadership grants to teachers and administrators.

The grant program promotes excellence in Catholic education by supporting teachers’ creative projects and professional development. Grants funded through this program are intended for transformative initiatives that benefit multiple grade levels and have a long-term impact on student learning.

“We encourage teachers to dare to dream to create an innovative opportunity for their students,” explained Foundations’ Executive Director, Holly Doherty-Lemoine, CFRE. “Donors to Foundations in Education make this program possible and we are grateful to all who value innovation and leadership in the classroom. Thanks to their generous support, we are able to help strengthen and transform Catholic education.”

Educators submitted grant proposals from September 15 – October 31, 2021.

This year, Foundations received thirty-one grant proposals from sixteen of the twenty-five Diocesan-sponsored Catholic schools in Fairfield County. The grant requests totaled nearly $215,000, 50% more than the available funding.

A grants committee carefully reviewed each proposal and submitted recommendations to Foundations’ Board of Trustees for approval. The committee is led by Dr. Julie McNamara, President Emerita of Albertus Magnus College and a Foundations Board member. Dr. McNamara is joined by Sr. Mary Grace Walsh, George Coleman, Fraser Randolph, Henry Rondon, Paula Summa, Executive Director Holly Doherty-Lemoine and Superintendent of Schools Dr. Steven Cheeseman, ex officio.

The awards ceremony celebrated in Bridgeport gave grant honorees the opportunity to share their creative vision with Foundations’ Board of Trustees, Grant Committee members and Donors assembled for the occasion.

The event was sponsored by Milestone C, a Connecticut-based education company whose mission is to shape future STEM leaders. Founder and CEO David Conelias commented, “Foundations in Education and Milestone C are like-minded organizations; supporting one another is the first step to securing the future of a young generation. Our primary focus is to help support schools to remain at the cutting edge of academics and leadership development.”

Thanks to the generosity of donors, Foundations in Education continues its ongoing commitment to strengthening and transforming Catholic education.

Foundations in Education is an independent non-profit initiative created to assist the Diocese of Bridgeport’s ongoing mission to support Catholic education in Fairfield County by supporting innovation in academic and extra-curricular programs, fostering opportunities for the professional development of school leaders and providing scholarship assistance to families in need. To learn more, visit www.foundationsineducation.org

Click here for photos from the event.

2022-2023 Innovation & Leadership Grants

  • All Saints School, Norwalk: Learning While Observing by Xavier Guzman $7,500
  • Catholic Academy of Bridgeport-St. Augustine Academy: Classroom 3D Printer by Peaches Bernard & Jennifer Mozdzer $2,000
  • Catholic Academy of Bridgeport-St. Raphael Academy: Happy Hollow Sensory Play Area by Kara Justo $8,000
  • Greenwich Catholic School, Greenwich: “Media Matters” – Content Creation, Video Editing, and Making Real-World Connections by Noelle Debes, Rebecca Steck, Patrick Ledley & Cara Groglio $9,660
  • Holy Trinity Catholic Academy, Shelton: Embracing Cultural Diversity by Jean Feige $2,991
  • Holy Trinity Catholic Academy, Shelton: Enhancing Future Learners with LiteTouch Interactive Touchscreens by Cindy Nizzardo $9,370
  • Immaculate High School, Danbury: Podcast 101 by Anthony Pellegrini $2,500
  • Immaculate High School, Danbury: Integrate “Real World” Data Collection and Analysis into Physics Labs by Anthony D’Ausilio $11,106
  • Kolbe Cathedral High School, Bridgeport: CAD: Empowering the Future of STEM by Dan Routhier & Laura Grover $14,996
  • Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Academy, Wilton: Growing for Good at Malta House by Rose Highland $1,150
  • St. Gregory the Great School, Danbury: Point and Press: Using Photography to tell a Story by Christin Peloso $5,000
  • St. James School, Stratford: Art Room by Claire Barber $4,000
  • St. James School, Stratford: Putting Play in Our Day, the Kindergarten Way! by Christie Crosby $2,500
  • St. Joseph High School, Trumbull: Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Router Machine by Harvey Mamrus $14,450
  • St. Joseph High School, Trumbull: Virtual Reality Set Up by Nancy DiBuono & Coleman Daley $14,750
  • St. Mark School, Stratford: Reinventing the Way We Look at Art by Sarah Carrano $5,995
  • St. Mark School, Stratford: Engaging and Empowering Interactive Minds by Melissa Warner $7,300
  • St. Mary School, Ridgefield: Science in PreK by Stephanie Kyriacou $750
  • St. Peter School, Danbury: Technology, Equipment, and NGSS – Oh My! by Suzanne Puglisi & Catherine Vill $4,000
  • St. Peter School, Danbury: Tiny EL Techies by Valerie Boyle $7,000
  • St. Peter School, Danbury: Tomorrow’s Leaders are Today’s Book Lovers by Teresa Lazzara $5,000
  • St. Rose of Lima School, Newtown: Exploring Scientific Wonders in Kindergarten by Donna Rahtelli $1,500
  • St. Rose of Lima School, Newtown: Listening Center Imagination Station by Jeanne Vitetta $750