Central Electric awards grants to teachers for 'Bright Ideas

Central Electric recently awarded $15,000 in Bright Ideas education grants to 13 teachers to fund engaging classroom learning projects. More than 2,700 students at local schools will participate in Bright Ideas projects funded by Central Electric this year.

“Our Bright Ideas grant recipients are making a real difference for students,” said Eddie Oldham, Central Electric CEO & General Manager. “Teachers have so many innovative ideas to engage students in learning, and we’re excited each year to support pioneering initiatives and creativity in the classroom through our Bright Ideas grant program. Central Electric is committed to the communities we serve, and we believe there is hardly a better investment than in the education of our youth and future leaders.”

Central Electric is one of 26 member-owned electric cooperatives in the state offering Bright Ideas grants to local educators. North Carolina’s Touchstone Energy cooperatives awarded teachers statewide close to $600,000 in Bright Ideas education grants.

Since 1994, North Carolina’s electric cooperatives collectively have awarded more than $11.5 million to Tar Heel teachers. The Bright Ideas program has reached well over 2.2 million North Carolina students and sponsored more than 11,000 projects in all subjects including math, reading, science and technology, history, music and the arts.

Bright Ideas grant applications are collected each year through mid-September, and winning proposals are selected in a competitive evaluation process by a panel of judges. The application process will reopen for interested teachers in April 2020. To find out more information about the Bright Ideas grant program, visit CEMCPower.com or NCBrightIdeas.com.


Bright Ideas Grant Winner


Grant Name


Amount Awarded

Rachel Lambert

McDeeds Creek Elementary

Garden Beds for Plant Growth and Understanding the N.C. Agricultural Economy



Jo Ann Lawler

Deep River Elementary

Deep River Learns for Life



Ashley Luersman

Cameron Elementary

Calling All Girls to Code and STEM!



Camm McNeill

SanLee Middle School

Music for All



Jill Manning

McDeeds Creek Elementary

McDeed’s Creek Weather Station



Georgia Proctor

Vass-Lakeview Elementary

Interactive Literature



Ashley Randolph

SanLee Middle School

Paper Circuits Kit



Paul Rizzo

Community Learning Center at Pinckney

Pinckney Construction Pathway Project



Diana Rowland

Sandhills Theater Arts Renaissance

Going Green with Greenhouses



Charlene Schlott

B.T. Bullock Elementary

Using Science, Talents, and Abilities to Recognize Learning of Underrepresented Students



Celeste Smith

Carthage Elementary

Ready, Set, Record!



Patricia Steingraber

Sandhills-Farm Life Elementary

Chillin’ in the STEAM Room



Angela Walter

Highland Elementary

Speak Up!