Teachers receive thousands from GIPS Foundation

Published: Mar. 4, 2021 at 9:46 PM CST
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GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - With many people suffering from mental illness during the Coronavirus pandemic, Wyandotte Learning Center’s Counseling and Mental Health Teacher Shelby Wallick received a lump sum of cash to give her students more training on the subject.

“We never know if we’re going to come across those situations or not,” Shelby Wallick said. “It’s always better to be prepared for those than to not know what to do.”

She received $1,010 from the Grand Island Public Schools Foundation on Thursday.

“It’s exciting,” Wallick said. “It will help me provide a lot of opportunities for my students.”

Wallick is using these funds to teach students QPR training which happens to be the mental health version of CPR.

“It will help our students learn how to recognize signs and symptoms of a potential suicidal incident and how to get those people the help that they need,” Wallick said.

She’s not the only teacher who received money to add more to their curriculum. In total, the GIPS Foundation is giving $35,174 in grants throughout the district.

“We’ve been going around all week giving way money and that’s what we do everyday we support the school district with philanthropic dollars,” said GIPS Foundation Director Traci Skalberg.

Their giving 10 grants totaling more than $11,174 to teachers for classroom projects, $1,000 in scholarship money to a teacher pursuing their graduate degree, and $23,000 to the Career Pathways Institute.

“We just thought this year we need to be a little bit more intentional and share the story with the community because their gifts really do matter especially in this time.”

We’re living in unprecedented times and Wallick believes now more than ever it’s important to teach the next generation how to survive and help others with mental illness.

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