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Local Students To Learn About The Outdoors Thanks To Grant Program
Updated October 3, 2017 5:59 AM | Filed under: Education
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(UNDATED) - Students at 25 Indiana schools this academic year will learn about the outdoors, thanks in part to a grant program that supports field trips to Indiana state parks and reservoirs.

The Discovering the Outdoors Field Trip Grant Program is for public, private, parochial or home-school educators and is administered through the Indiana Natural Resources Foundation (INRF), the supporting non-profit of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.

The grants fund transportation costs, program fees and classroom supplies related to preparation or follow-up for the field trips.

An estimated 2,461 students, K-12, will benefit from the grant program in 2017-18. The program expects to distribute $7,026 through 27 grants. All valid applicants will receive funds this year.

This is the fifth academic year that the grant program has been in effect. Through the current academic year, the program has distributed more than $26,000 in overall funding and helped almost 8,100 students.

The fund was established in memory of Tom Huck, a long-time DNR employee who was an ardent supporter of outdoor experiences for children, with financial help from the Indiana Master Naturalist Advisory Council, according to Jody Kress, executive director of the INRF.

"We appreciate the generosity of those who contribute to Indiana's youth," Kress said. "We hope to see this program grow so we can educate more students across the state about our natural and cultural heritage."

To donate, visit

Indiana has 24 state parks and eight reservoirs eligible for field trip funding. Field trips to parks and reservoirs engage students in learning about Indiana's fish, forest, wildlife, natural habitats and conservation.

The receiving schools and grant information are:

  • Angola Middle School, Angola, grade seven, Pokagon State Park, $241.
  • Bloomington South High School, Bloomington, grades nine-12, Spring Mill State Park, $250.
  • Bradie M. Shrum Elementary School, Salem, grade five, Spring Mill State Park, $250.
  • Canaan Community Academy, Canaan, kindergarten, Clifty Falls State Park, $250.
  • Clarksville Elementary School, Clarksville, grade two, Falls of the Ohio State Park, $500.
  • Delaware Elementary, Evansville, grade one, Harmonie State Park, $250.
  • Dubois Elementary School, Dubois, grade three, Patoka Lake, $250.
  • East Washington Academy, Muncie, grade four, Whitewater Memorial State Park, $250.
  • Frankie Woods McCullough Girls Academy, Gary, kindergarten, Indiana Dunes State Park, $250.
  • Highland Park Elementary, Bloomington, grades one and two, McCormick's Creek State Park, $500.
  • Lancaster Central Elementary, Bluffton, kindergarten, Ouabache State Park, $250.
  • North Elementary, Washington, grade four, Lincoln State Park, $250.
  • Northridge Middle School, Crawfordsville, grade six, Turkey Run State Park, $250.
  • Northwest Elementary, Huntington, grade five, Salamonie Lake, $70.
  • Our Lady of Perpetual Help, New Albany, grade four, Falls of the Ohio State Park, $250.
  • Pioneer Elementary, Royal Center, grade four, Prophetstown State Park, $250.
  • Rock Creek Community Academy, Sellersburg, Kindergarten, Falls of the Ohio State Park, $250.
  • Seymour Sixth Grade Center, Seymour, grade 6, Spring Mill State Park, $250.
  • Shortridge High School, Indianapolis, grade 11, Indiana Dunes State Park, $250.
  • South Decatur Elementary, Greensburg, kindergarten, Versailles State Park, $250.
  • South Decatur Elementary, Greensburg, grade four, Versailles State Park, $240.
  • Southern Wells Elementary, Poneto, grade six, McCormick's Creek State Park, $250.
  • Southern Wells Elementary, Poneto, grade two, Salamonie Lake, $250.
  • St. Bernard School, LaFontaine, grades kindergarten through six, Salamonie Lake, $250.
  • St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic School, Fort Wayne, grade seven, Chain O'Lakes State Park, $250. Thomas Miller Elementary, Dayton, grade three, Prophetstown State Park, $225.
  • Westville Elementary, Westville, grade four, Indiana Dunes State Park, $250.

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