DonorsChoose.org brings class project to life

By Hanna Taft, Staff Writer

From dissecting owl pellets to frogs, students have the chance to participate in a number of projects at CHS. However, many schools that are not as economically fortunate do not have the tools to receive the same learning experience. A website known as DonorsChoose.org gives those who do not have these opportunities to learn a chance to open their minds to things they might never have experienced.

DonorsChoose.org allows American teachers to post unfunded classroom project requests, enabling visitors to browse the requests, and if one catches their eye, to contribute money that would turn the teacher’s idea into a reality.

According to DonorsChoose.org, the website began at a high school in Bronx, New York, where teachers were experiencing first hand the lack of learning materials in their public schools. In 2000, Charles Best, a former social studies teacher who taught in the city, created DonorsChoose.org, giving people from around the country an opportunity to help students in need.

According to the website, 63 percent of projects become fully funded, and 94 percent of teachers said their funded projects increased effectiveness in their classrooms.

This website does not apply to CHS because CHS exceeds the maximum financial standards. However, many teachers have turned to other alternatives to come up with the money for necessary supplies. AP Biology teacher Anat Schwartz fundraised about $400 from selling AP Biology shirts this year.

“I’ve looked into DonorsChoose.org, but we don’t really qualify,” Schwartz said.

DonorsChoose.org has empowered over 20,000 teachers and “citizen philanthropists” to become change makers, and their mission statement on the website reads: “Our vision is of a nation where students in every community have the resources they need to learn.”