"These programs came in response to survey results from Ameren customers who said they care most about improving education," says Gary L. Rainwater, Ameren chairman, president and chief executive officer. "We care about our customers\- and the communities where we provide electricity and natural gas. These three distinct programs are aimed at supporting education throughout Ameren's 64,000- square-mile service area in Illinois and Missouri---where school systems face some tough financial pressures."
Here are details on the three Power Up programs:
• With Ameren Power Up SMART Boards' -- the company becomes the first in the nation to supply grant money for SMART Boards' in schools. An interactive whiteboard, SMART Board' is a touch-sensitive display about the size of a standard whiteboard. Hooked up to a computer and projector, it operates like a giant computer screen students and teachers simply touch to operate. Students can also write over applications in digital ink, then save their work for future study and review. The whiteboard engages students with diverse learning styles by providing both immediate access to a wide range of digital materials and a common focus for the entire class. In 2005, Ameren will donate more than 200 Ameren Power Up SMART Boards' to area classrooms through a program valued at $600,000. The funding covers the costs of the boards, the software, connecting cables and training. Ameren Power Up SMART Boards' will go to public or private K-12 schools. Eligible schools must be an electric and/or natural gas customer of AmerenCILCO, AmerenCIPS, AmerenIP or AmerenUE. Applications must be submitted electronically through the Ameren Web site, www.ameren.com, ONLY. The two 2005 application periods run from April 1 - May 15 and from Sept. 1 - Oct. 15.
• Ameren Power Up ---Fuel Cell Kits: Ameren is providing self-contained solar hydrogen fuel cell energy systems---kits that high school science teachers can use to build awareness of renewable energy sources through hands- on experiments, and a curriculum that reinforces Ameren's commitment to the environment and explains energy generation through renewable resources. In 2005, Ameren will donate fuel cell kits totaling $150,000 to teachers.
Teachers who receive kits must teach at public or private high schools that are electric and/or gas customer of AmerenCILCO, AmerenCIPS, AmerenIP or AmerenUE. Teachers must submit applications electronically via www.ameren.com between Sept. 1 and Oct. 15.
• Ameren Power Up Teacher Grants: In 2005, the company will award $250 Ameren Power Up Teacher Grants totaling $150,000---directly to teachers. This flexible grants program is for individual classroom teachers who could use the Ameren Power Up Teacher Grants for everything from calculators to basic supplies. Ameren Power Up Teacher Grants may be for any classroom-related project that has an academic focus to improve student achievement. Teacher grants must fund projects or materials in public or private K-12 schools that are electric and/or gas customers of AmerenCILCO, AmerenCIPS, AmerenIP or AmerenUE. Teachers must submit applications electronically via www.ameren.com. There will be two grant periods in 2005. Applications will be accepted between April 1 and May 15 or between Sept. 1 and Oct. 15.
For more information and to apply, educators should visit www.ameren.com -go to Community and then to the Power Up Teacher Grants programs as the first links.
With assets of more than $17 billion, Ameren through its subsidiaries, serves 2.3 million electric and more than 900,000 natural gas customers in a 64,000- square-mile area of Illinois and Missouri.
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