Manitoba Government Invests $3.2 Million in 38 New Projects Under Teachers’ Idea Fund

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News from Broadway
[October 25, 2022]

Projects Support Mental Health, Well-Being of Students and Educators, Help Make Classrooms and Schools Places of Innovation, Discovery and Excitement: Ewasko

The Manitoba government is investing $3.2 million in 38 new projects under the Teachers’ Idea Fund, Education and Early Childhood Learning Minister Wayne Ewasko announced today.

“Manitoba’s Teachers’ Idea Fund provides teachers, staff and school leaders with the resources needed to develop innovative projects that support high-quality learning and positive outcomes for their students,” said Ewasko. “Our government is pleased to approve projects that will support the mental health and well-being of students and educators, and help make classrooms and schools across the province places of innovation, discovery and excitement.”

This investment is in addition to the funding of 25 multi-year projects announced in December 2021, which will continue this school year for a total of $1.7 million. To date, the Teachers’ Idea Fund has approved 162 projects in 29 school divisions for total funding of $11 million targeting learning supports, models of teaching and learning, mental health and well-being, transitions in kindergarten to Grade 12 education and engaging families and parents.

Launched in March 2021, the five-year, $25-million Teachers’ Idea Fund received proposals focused on one or more of the following mental health and well-being strategies in its spring 2022-23 intake:

  • talking about mental health;
  • training for teachers;
  • incorporating mental health into teaching;
  • providing appropriate tools and supports for students; and
  • taking care of teachers and staff.

“With staff and students back to school full time in Manitoba and in person, it is fulfilling to see school divisions, principals and teachers working together to implement innovative ideas to improve their mental health and well-being, and that of their students,” said Mental Health and Community Wellness Minister Sarah Guillemard. “Open discussions about mental health in our education system can help students and staff overcome barriers and reach their full potential.”

The work would not be possible without the input and advice of the Teachers’ Idea Fund Advisory Panel that reviews applications and supports their implementation, Ewasko noted. The panel is made up of diverse specialists from post-secondary institutions, the innovation sector, industry and business, mental health, government and kindergarten to Grade 12 education.

A progress report on previous projects highlights increased literacy and numeracy outcomes, attendance and engagement, and student mental health and well-being. The Teachers’ Idea Fund progress report outlines how educators are putting innovation into action to support students in Manitoba, Ewasko added.

At Souris School in Southwest Horizon School Division, one innovative project from the 2021-22 school year was to support STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) learning and gave students new insight into how STEM experiences can be integrated in their day-to-day school learning.

“The program gave students an authentic learning experience, which intrinsically started a wave of getting others excited in robotics, both in and out of the classroom. This was more than a tool, it become something that connected curriculum with innovation and the students became the experts,” said Jonathan Filewich, teacher, Souris School. “This is why the project was invaluable and will always be a staple within our grade 5/6 classrooms. I’m thankful not only for the funding, but for the learning experiences the students have given all of us.”

For more information on the Teachers’ Idea Fund and to view the recently released progress report, visit https://edu.gov.mb.ca/k12/teachers_idea_fund/index.html.

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