FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — On Monday, May 23, the Fayetteville Public Education Foundation will host the 22nd Annual Celebration of Excellence at the Fayetteville Public Library.

According to a press release, over 300 community partners, school patrons and educators will gather to celebrate this year’s teacher grants, the Pendergraft awards and student scholarships. A reception will begin at 6:00 p.m. with a ceremony starting at 7:00 p.m.

The Foundation will distribute sixty “innovative and pioneering grants” at the Celebration and will also give eleven scholarships to “deserving seniors.” This year’s distribution came from the Fayetteville Public Education Foundation’s $4.8 million endowment, which generated over $150,000 in grant awards and $19,500 in scholarships. The Marty Thurlby Deweese Study Abroad Scholarship was suspended this year due to COVID-19.

Over $250,000 of the funds awarded came from grants given through corporations, foundations and individuals.

The Foundation drives emerging needs identified by teachers for projects that give our children a rich educational experience while preserving public dollars for the work of schools. The endowment began with two goals in mind; first, to guarantee that teachers would be the sole beneficiary of support, engaging thousands of students in extraordinary programs in our Fayetteville Public Schools, and second, to ensure a sustainable investment that would remain in perpetuity for generations of students.

Cambre Horne-Brooks, Executive Director of the Fayetteville Public Education Foundation

The Foundation will introduce five new Funds to be added to the Foundation’s endowment:

  • The Candy Clark Scholarship Fund
  • The Larry & Nancy Bittle Family Keystone Fund
  • The Jan Thurow Memorial Fund
  • The Donna Hayden Lyles Fund
  • The Barnhart-Eichmann Family Fund

Each fund will be distributed annually through either student scholarships or teacher grants for programs throughout the District. Three recipients will receive the 2022 A.P.P.L.E. Awards (A Patron Providing Leadership by Example) for their dedication and support of the Fayetteville Public Education Foundation.