Johnson Development Communities Give $45,000 to Fort Bend Education Foundation


When some lucky Fort Bend Independent School (FBISD) teachers head back to the classroom this year, they will have lots of new, innovative resources to help keep students engaged and excited about learning.

Three Johnson Development Corp. communities have donated $45,000 to fund a broad list of grant requests, including new library books, iPads, interactive white boards, flexible seating and STEM kits to encourage interest in science, technology, engineering and math. Each year, FBISD teachers submit grant proposals to the Fort Bend Education Foundation (FBEF) to be reviewed and graded. The grants are awarded in order of their overall score. The generous gift from Harvest Green, Imperial and Riverstone, funded through the communities’ foundation fees, fulfilled the top FBEF grants for their area schools.

“Teachers nurture our children’s physical, emotional and educational health, but they can’t do it alone,” said Jerry Ulke, Vice President and General Manager for Harvest Green and Imperial. “They need the support of the entire community. That’s why we are proud to support the Fort Bend Education Foundation.”

Brenna Cosby, FBEF Executive Director, says the partnership with Johnson Development is making a difference.  “The demands on school districts today are enormous, and budgets cannot always keep pace with the individual requests of classroom teachers who want to make innovative education a reality for their students,” Cosby said.

The eleven schools that will benefit are Austin Parkway Elementary, Commonwealth Elementary, Lakeview Elementary, Neill Elementary, Sullivan Elementary, Bowie Middle School, First Colony Middle School, Sugar Land Middle School, Elkins High School, Kempner High School and Travis High School.

Trey Riechert, Vice President and General Manager of Riverstone says supporting FBEF benefits everyone.

“Building a community starts with building exceptional schools,” he said. “Riverstone is committed to supporting organizations that encourage teachers to use their creativity and initiative to benefit students not only at our schools but across the district.”

An appointed group of residents from each Johnson Development community comprise the “Your Community Foundation Committee” (YCFC) and works with their homeowners associations to review grant requests.

Byron Davis, fourth grade teacher at Austin Parkway Elementary, is an appreciative grant recipient. “Riverstone has made it possible for us to give our students the best,” he said. “Through their support, we are going to be able to put diverse reading selections into the hands of our students.”

Students will also benefit from more technology. “Because of Imperial’s generosity, we have found new iPads in our classroom,” said Sharon Atkinson, first grade teacher at Lakeview Elementary. “It was such a surprise, and I know student learning has been and will continue to be increase because of this gift.”

The funds are generated through foundation fees, which is a percentage of a home’s sale price that is collected each time a home sells or is resold in every one of Johnson Development’s communities. The reserve funds create a unique revenue stream that can fund projects to enhance a community’s infrastructure or to benefit outside organizations that directly impact a community.

Harvest Green, Imperial, and Riverstone aren’t the only Johnson Development Communities that have supported FBISD schools this year. Sienna has donated more than $40,000 to benefit Heritage Rose Elementary, Leonetti Elementary, Sienna Crossing Elementary and Thornton Middle School.

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