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Gainesville Middle School teachers earn almost $1,600 in grants
David Lee, senior commercial and industrial representative for Jackson EMC, presents the Bright Ideas Grant check at the Gainesville City Schools Board of Education meeting. Pictured, from left, are Sharla Gladden, Gainesville Middle School teacher and grant recipient; Sammy Smith, board member; John Filson, board member; Lee; Delores Diaz, board chairwoman; Brett Mercer, board vice chairman; Jim Bradley, Gainesville Middle School teacher and grant recipient; Willie Mitchell, board member; Wanda Creel, superintendent.

Jackson EMC awarded two Gainesville Middle School teachers a total of $1,583.78 in Bright Ideas grants.

Jim Bradley earned $843.78 for a green fire design where students will plan and construct a hydro/wind power project to generate hydrogen gas. Sharla Gladden received $740 for a dissection lab in her life sciences program.

In 2016, Jackson EMC awarded more than $65,700 in Bright Ideas grants to 53 teachers in 29 schools across its service area, marking an increase of more than $15,000 from 2015.

The Bright Ideas Grant Program awards up to $2,000 to middle school teachers in the Jackson EMC service area for innovative classroom projects that would go unfunded otherwise.  An independent panel of judges evaluates the applications based on measurable goals and objectives, innovation, student involvement and implementation plans.

For more information on the Jackson EMC Bright Ideas Grant Program, visit

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