LAFCU awards $3K to teachers at Perry Public Schools

Kindergartners to high school students will be touched by the grants; funds will help boost mental, physical health and engaged learning

LANSING, MI (May 18, 2022) — LAFCU recently surprised six Perry Public Schools teachers each with a $500 grant.

Teachers winning the $3,000 in grants are Olivia Flores, kindergarten; Abigail Schuelke, K-4 special education; Amy Daenzer, seventh grade social studies/language arts and 6-8 special education; Danyne Lambert, seventh grade science; Jennifer Gauna, high school media and technology course; Misti Leitelt, high school special education.

“The grants are another innovative way LAFCU supports Perry Public Schools,” said Lori Haven, Ed.D., Perry Public Schools superintendent. “During our nine-year partnership with LAFCU, they have not only provided funding for programs and materials that are beyond our budgets — such as these teacher grants — but LAFCU’s leadership and staff have also invested their time and talent to positively impact our students. It’s a model private-public partnership.”

LAFCU had invited teachers to apply for a grant by identifying how they would use the funds. Two teachers from each of the elementary, middle and high school were selected.

“The applications were incredibly inspiring,” said Shelia Scott, LAFCU community financial education & business development officer. “The requests highlight teachers’ care for students’ mental and physical health as well as support for an engaged learning environment.”

The winners will use the grants to provide:

  • Art supplies and reusable water bottles for kindergarteners.
  • Updated seating for a healthier option to increase engagement and collaboration.
  • Establishment of a student recycling program, beyond paper, that fulfills students’ plans.
  • A community garden to focus on life cycles of plants and foods, as well as provide produce to local families in need.
  • A camera for yearbook staffers.
  • Interactive materials for a peer-to-peer outreach program about inclusive learning with autistic and disabled populations.

“These grants recognize the importance of educating youth,” Scott said. “They also demonstrate LAFCU’s commitment to giving back to the communities it serves.”

The winners were announced at the school district’s All Staff Appreciation Lunch, Wednesday, May 11.

LAFCU partnered with the Perry school district beginning 2014 to offer real-world financial education opportunities to students in all grades. Today, there are in-school branches, in-class instruction, and an annual Financial Reality Fair for sophomores.

The credit union has also sponsored programs that create a more enriching educational environment, including a high school student-run coffee shop, and establishment and continued sponsorship of an activities conference with six other high schools and an annual conference scholar-athlete recognition event. LAFCU was first to donate to the high school’s recent $80,000 fundraising campaign for new band uniforms.

LAFCU’s Shelia Scott, at left, awards six teachers with Perry Public Schools each with a $500 grant: From second to left, Abigail Schuelke, Olivia Flores, Amy Daenzer, Danyne Lambert, Jennifer Gauna and Misti Leitelt. Also pictured is school district Superintendent Lori Haven, far right.

About LAFCU (MI)

Chartered in 1936, LAFCU is a not-for-profit financial cooperative open for membership to anyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in Michigan and to businesses and other entities located in Michigan. The credit union serves more than 74,000 members and holds over $1 billion in assets. It was named a Best Credit Union to Work For in 2020. LAFCU offers a comprehensive range of financial products and services as well as an expanding complement of financial technology solutions. Members enjoy benefits such as low fees, low-interest rates on loans, high yields on savings, discounts, knowledgeable employees and nationwide access to fee-free ATMs. A recipient of the national Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Community Service Award for credit unions, LAFCU enriches the communities it serves by supporting many organizations and causes. To learn more about LAFCU, call 800.748.0228 or visit


Ashley Sandborn
Vice President, Publicom Inc.

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