Kenan Grants Support Faculty Professional Development through Summer Research Projects

Endowed in 1979 by the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust to support professional development, Foxcroft was the first girls’ school to award “Kenan Grants” to faculty for summer research, scholarship, and creativity to enhance teaching and learning at the School. Director of the Learning Center Regan Antila and STEM teacher Dr. James Sweeney conducted research projects over the summer as recipients of Kenan Grants.
Ms. Antila explored the topic of executive function (EF) in order to curate a collection of resource materials to share with teaching faculty and advisors through a Learning Center tile developed for myFoxcroft. Research has demonstrated that executive function is a more reliable predictor of success in life and academics than test scores, IQ, and socioeconomic status ( and that EF strategy instruction can help students become effective, flexible, self-reflective learners ( Providing teaching faculty and advisors with general information and specific strategies is the first step toward embedding EF skill development into classroom structures and routines and supporting the needs of individual students. Our Academic Planner is a great example and a critical part of supporting our students’ academic needs, and we also thank Fine Arts Department Chair Julie Fisher for her work designing the planner over the summer.

Dr. Sweeney researched and then created a curriculum for Algebra II that utilizes a self-paced and mastery strategy, allowing him to meet students where they are on their math journey and help them progress through the content at a level and pace that makes sense for them. He produced the first two units of his course over the summer and created a framework that will allow him to improve on the ideas as he moves through the school year.
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An all-girls boarding and day school in Northern Virginia, Foxcroft prepares young women in grades 9-12 for success in college and in life. Our outstanding academic program offers challenging courses, including Advanced Placement classes and an innovative STEM program. Our premiere equestrian program is nationally recognized, and our athletic teams have won conference and state championships. Experience the best in girls' boarding schools: visit Foxcroft.