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Scholarship Opportunities Extended for Fort Fairfield Elementary School Students


By:  David Deschesne

Fort Fairfield Journal, October 9, 2019


   Kindergarten students at Fort Fairfield Elementary school, and their parents, assembled for a presentation by the Finance Authority of Maine for their announcement that the Alfond Scholarship foundation and FAME will continue their joint investment in the ME Kindergarten scholarship program.  Fort Fairfield Elementary School and Sabattus Primary School in Androscoggin County are the only two schools in Maine featuring the first-in-the-state education initiative.  It is specifically designed to inspire Maine families with children entering kindergarten to start preparing for future higher education.

   “This particular opportunity, Invest in ME Kindergarten, is actually open to all kids in Maine and it’s two part,” explained Elizabeth Venderweide, FAME Director of Business Development.  “The Harold Alfond College Challenge has been giving five hundred dollar Alfond grants for every child born a Maine resident since 2013.  Those kids are now growing up and entering kindergarten.  We want to remind parents that at this time, not only does your child have the five hundred dollar Alfond grant, you also can save own your own, or you can open a NexGen account.  NexGen is run by Finance Authority of Maine and they also have matching grants.”

      “It’s an opportunity for people to take those daycare dollars that they’re probably not having to pay so much for child care and use those to start saving for higher education.”

    This year 30 schools were selected to participate in the Invest in ME Kindergarten program and 16 were chosen as County Champion Schools. All 30 schools will receive information from Invest in ME Kindergarten over the course of the school year.

As a County Champion School, Fort Fairfield Elementary School will receive a $500 grant and tools and resources throughout the year to support Invest in ME Kindergarten initiatives for its families.

      The young students participated in a craft to illustrate their future goals in life and each were issued a pair of sunglasses because their “future is so bright, they've got to wear shades.”