Providing the foundation to education in MPS

Zoey Buthorne, Features Editor

Millard students primarily know the Millard Foundation through Kids Net-now known as SPARK- because they went there as a kid. However, the foundation actually does a lot more than this that students might not be aware of. 

Spark formally known as Kids Network is Millard Foundation’s current after school program.

”SPARK is a parent-paid program whose funds help us [Millard Foundation] give money back to the school district,” Mark Beller, the Director of Operations at Millard Foundation, said. SPARK not only provides younger kids with a safe space but it is also one of the main sources of funding for programs that benefit all students throughout the district. 

Millard foundation uses the money it earns from SPARK as well as other fundraising events and campaigns to give many back to Millard South as well as other schools in Millard. 

“Over several years we’ve [Millard Foundation] given more than a million dollars back to the school district and we’re proud to say we have given money to every school in the school district. In other words, every school receives funding from the foundation to use for strategic initiatives within their building.”Marilyn Chillett, Director of Development and Communications at Millard Foundation, Said. 

The Foundation also does scholarships where they give away $150,000  worth of scholarships to Millard Seniors every year. This year they gave away 79 scholarships, 29 of which went to Millard South students. 

“The scholarship I won from Millard Foundations was the Reeder Elementary scholarship,” senior Miranda Kelly said. “I went to Reeder for all six years of elementary school and really liked it there so I decided to apply for that scholarship and I got it.” 

Additionally, the Millard Foundation helps sponsor three school pantries including the Patriot Pantry and helps to fund the MPS Family Fund which helps families in the district with things like transportation and internet connectivity. 

While the foundation is rewarding to the school district it is also rewarding to the people who work there. 

“I have a kid who goes to Millard and the most rewarding thing about my job is being able to see the things that we do directly benefit him in his classroom and his friends. I think that when you can see that we’re making a difference whether that’s providing a safe place for kids at school or providing books to students who don’t normally have the opportunity to have new books, or really anytime you see that what you’re doing is helping a child, it’s very rewarding,” Chillett said. 

All in all the work the Millard Foundation has done benefits students and teachers from elementary to high school and will continue to benefit students well into the future.