News & Press

Tri-County EMC recently surprised 25 teachers in Jones, Putnam, Baldwin, Wilkinson, and Jasper Counties with educational grants totaling $30,000. Since 2008, Tri-County Electric Membership Cooperative has provided more than $300,000 in grants to local schools. Funded by unclaimed capital credits, the grants help teachers improve education in their classrooms through innovative projects that would otherwise not be funded. Georgia certified public or private school teachers in grades Pre-K through 12th Grade in Baldwin, Jones, Putnam, Jasper, Twiggs and Wilkinson counties qualify to apply.

This year, outside judges evaluated the 47 blind applications that were submitted for innovation, goals, objectives, student involvement and budget. Thanks to all teachers who applied in 2022 and we look forward to seeing your applications in 2023!



Christin White, Dames Ferry Elementary School
Help Us Put Down Roots, $996.95
This project will enable students to engage in year-long gardening with the purchase of a greenhouse, where students will learn to sow seeds, establish roots, transfer pollinating plants to pollinator gardens, and learn about harvesting plants. Goals for this program
include involving all students in a unique, real-world learning experience, while sustaining ongoing community partnerships, learning how to propagate and harvest seeds, and gaining an appreciation for food origins.

Abby Long, Dames Ferry Elementary School
Compost Crusaders, $1,369.16
Vermicomposting and composting have been an important part of the third grade STEM initiative at Dames Ferry Elementary School. Funds for this project will allow for expansion from the classroom into the courtyard and provide other grade level STEM projects with nutrient rich soil to sustain the plants and animals at Dames Ferry Elementary School.

Cindy Bloodworth, Turner Woods Elementary School
Don’t Recreate the Wheel, $750.74
Teachers today spend a tremendous amount of time on paperwork. This grant will be used to purchase engaging, ready-made lessons though

Laura Dixon, Turner Woods Elementary School
Lights, Camera, Action!, $933.31
The goal of this project is to start a weekly news production for both the younger and older students at Turner Woods Elementary School.

Jason Barbee, Gray Station Middle School
Academic Weapon for Student Success, $1,250
Funds from this grant will allow for the purchase of the USATestprep program, which provides students with practice tools for various subjects and helps prepare them for the Georgia Milestones.

Sara Weese, Jones County High School
Drama Department Startup, $1,027.88
This project will grow the drama program at Jones County High School by allowing the purchase of resources and materials needed for yearly stage productions put on by the student body. A successful theater program will provide students with tools needed to bring their creative ideas to fruition.



Glisa Turner, Putnam County Primary School
Cooking in the Classroom, $1,460.12
Students will participate in bi-monthly, project-based learning activities through the preparation of food. From making muffins, preparing pizzas, or serving up salsa, academic and social concepts will be reinforced, all while creating special memories and learning life-long skills.

Heather Bryan, Putnam County Primary School
Creating Future Leaders, $1,248.48
Funds for this project will be used to purchase decodable readers for first grade students learning to read. Decodable readers are a type of text that feature words that follow specific phonics patterns that are being reviewed/taught.

Gail Davis, Putnam County Primary School
Morning Tubs, $376.99
Grant money will be used to purchase tubs used for daily, hands-on learning activities for students to complete as part of their morning routine.

Ivy Carnes, Putnam County Primary School
Dash Into Coding, $1,408
K-2nd Grade students will learn the basics of coding and programming through the use of an app called Blockly.

Niki Hutsell, Putnam County Middle School
Flex Seating for the Classroom, $1,481.71
To promote independent learning and collaboration among students, flexible seating will be implemented in the classroom with a goal of finding placement to fit all learning styles and intellectual and behavioral needs.

Ashley Reynolds, Putnam County Middle School
Podcasts in the Middle, $1,500
The goal of Podcasts in the Middle is to help students develop career goals and aspirations by bringing podcasting into the classroom. The necessary equipment will be purchased so that students can create, design, manage, and distribute their own podcast.

Rebekah Esau, Putnam County High School
Service Leadership A-Printer-Ship, $1,279.38
Funds will be used to purchase a large-scale printer that will be used to foster school spirit through graphic design and create a positive and inclusive school culture among students, faculty, and staff.

Kimberly McLaulin, Gatewood School
Lights, Camera, Chromebooks, $1,335.96
Chromebooks will be purchased to bring a hands-on learning experience to the classroom through instant research capabilities with technology at student’s fingertips.   



Linda Colwell, Lakeview Primary School

Retelling Stories, $441.80

Grant money will be used to purchase felt manipulatives to retell stories from books the class has previously read. This will help boost reading comprehension by creating a multi-sensory approach.


Tonya Arnold, Lakeview Primary School

Weather Reporters, $1,495

Students will each get a chance to use a weather station as a meteorologist. They will learn about weather, temperature, numbers, addition, along with reading, writing, and speaking standards. Each day a student will record the information gathered and report back to the class.


Crystal Kennedy, Lakeview Primary School

Class Pets – Companionship and Learning Opportunities, $1,500

Ms. Kennedy’s class will adopt a pet chameleon for the classroom to promote a sense of unity, compassion, and responsibility.


Stephanie Coxwell, Midway Hills Academy

The Chick Inn, $1,000

Funds will be used to purchase chickens and furnish the materials and labor to build a chicken coop in the school garden area. Students will be tasked with egg counting, animal behavior tracking, health data recording, and incorporating chicken byproducts into the school garden.


Crystal Beard, Baldwin County Early Learning Center

Breaking Barriers, $922.44

This project will break down any communication barriers between English Language Learners and teacher through the purchase of the Vasco V4, a universal translator device that can instantly translate voices and images.


Shelby Hedgepeth, Baldwin County Early Learning Center

Therapy for the Soul, $1,143.10

Grant money will be used to foster a gardening program, allowing students to understand where food comes from and how to grow it.


Sharon Reeves, Oak Hill Middle School

Aquaponics in the Classroom, $1,500

The goal of aquaponics in the classroom is to provide students the opportunity to utilize science, engineering, and math practices in an authentic problem-solving activity. Students will design and construct an operational aquaponics system that produces food and optimizes the nutrient cycling.



Felicia Poole, Wilkinson County High School
Forensic Science, $1,278.98
Funds for this project will be used to purchase a digital forensic science curriculum and materials used to conduct labs. Students will be introduced to the real-world processes and techniques used at a crime scene, including search and acquisition evidence.



Tyson Harty, Jasper County High School
Achieving Higher Quality Student Filmmaking, $1,500
The goal of this project is to enhance the growing AVTF program at Jasper County High School with the purchase of new and upgraded camera equipment. This will allow students to refine their skills in turned creative, collaborative ideas into original short films and documentaries.

Tiffany Fowler, Jasper County High School
Planning Ahead, $1,500
Tailored for ACCESS students, this project will provide students with intellectual disabilities with hands-on experiences for real application in preparation of independent living.

Rene Seals, Washington Park Elementary School
Playground Communication Board, $1,300
Grant money will purchase a Playground Communication Board to make the school playground inclusive to non-verbal students. This will help increase socialization and communication between both verbal and non-verbal students.

« All News & Updates