Staff Writer
Gonzales Weekly Citizen
The 2012 - 2013 grant recipients pose proudly with their certificates and checks in the EATEL lobby at a special ceremony held in their honor, October 18. 

Back row, L to R: EATEL C.O.O. Ashley Phillips, Pam Gautreau, Tricia Hymel, Mae Stevens, Stefanie Tranchida, Sandi Bourque, Carla Duplechin, Joseph Nassar, and Ascension Parish Asst. Superintendent of Schools Steve Westbrook. Front row, L to R: Ascension Parish Schools Career Coach Renni Diez, Ascension Parish Schools Career Coach Micki LeBlanc, Carlye Roussel, Ascension Parish Schools Career Coach Ronda Matthews, and EATEL Community Coordinator Jenny Heroman.

EATEL recently held a ceremony honoring 10 Ascension Parish teachers and awarding them with $500 each in grant money to support innovative teaching methods that are designed to engage students in their classrooms. EATEL's "Reach a Kid, Teach a Kid" grants provide these teachers with the funds needed to implement unique and innovative classroom lessons that they will use to inspire and motivate their students to learn.

For over 16 years, the annual program has helped fund these unique projects at area schools, impacting hundreds of primary, middle and high school students each year. To date, EATEL has awarded more than $75,000 in teacher grants. The application process and ceremony were moved this year from the spring to the fall.

"This year, we had three times as many submissions than in previous years," said Ashley Phillips, EATEL's Chief Operating Officer. "But what's even more impressive is the increase in the quality of these grant submissions. These teachers are truly assets in our community and Ascension Parish students are certainly benefiting from their classroom innovations."

2012 EATEL grant winners include:

Ascension Parish Career Coaches, Ascension Parish High Schools

Project: "'Find a Job That You Love and You'll Never Have to Work a Day in Your Life' - Confucius"

Sandi Bourque, Sorrento Primary School, 2nd grade

Project: "Planting the Seed: Begin with the Roots!"

Carla Duplechin, Gonzales Middle School, 6th – 8th grades

Project: "Showing-Off Our Abilities!"

Mary Beth Garic, Ascension Catholic Regional Elementary School, K - 4th grades

Project: "Our Historic Building - Our Heritage of Love"

Pam Gautreau, Lakeside Primary School, 2nd grade

Project: "Follow THAT Leader!"

Joseph Nassar, St. Amant High School, 9th – 12th grades

Project: "Beginning Guitar"

Tricia Hymel, Spanish Lake Primary School, K - 5th grades

0.Project: "Overcoming Obstacles in Physical Education"

Carlye Roussel, Duplessis Primary School, 5th grade

Project: "Helping Students Succeed in Math and Science"

Mae Stevens, Prairieville Primary School, 5th grade

Project: "Properties of Matter"

Stefanie Tranchida, Donaldsonville Primary School, Kindergarten

Project: "Discovery Center"

Get the details about each of the Reach a Kid, Teach a Kid projects at