MADISON (WKOW) -- The Madison School District received a ray of light today in the midst of such dark budget predictions.
Members of The Foundation for Madison's Public Schools boarded a bus and started giving out money to worthy programs.
With a hop in their step and almost 47 thousand dollars in hand, they made their first stop at Memorial High School to help a special ed project.
"It gives students with special needs a chance to get experience in preparing...they're working on a food cart this year" says Foundation President Martha Vukelich-Austin.
The bus tour is an opportunity to hand out thousands of dollars to six innovative projects, all at separate schools within the district.
And it's usually a surprise.
"I had my fingers crossed," says Madison Memorial teacher Eric Hartz, "but I had no Idea we were going to get it. And I'm really surprised because it was a big amount of money."
The foundation president says, this year especially, the grants are vital.
"They're tight budget times but teachers have some great creative ideas and ways to make a difference for kids and the foundation is just proud that we can give the money to help make the dreams the teachers have become a reality for their kids" says Vukelich-Austin.
Since it's inception, the foundation has provided 600 thousand dollars in grants to Madison schools.
The foundation is entirely separate from the school board, but it's behind the schools, all the way.
Despite the tough economic times, the foundation managed to raise almost as much grant money as last year.