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Teachers and Grants: Success Stories

Let me share some grant writing success stories to get your juices flowing. The summer is a wonderful time to clear the decks and start planning for next year; there will be curriculum related projects you will want to support with your grant writing efforts. Some projects selected for review are big, many teachers and other professionals banded together to do big things.

Blended Learning:

Rogers Family Foundation: 10 months of planning, design and implementation for a blended learning pilot in four traditional district schools in Oakland, CA. Oakland Unified School District faces a persistent achievement gap. Four pilot schools were selected to begin a systemic upgrade to facilities to prepare for a district blended learning project. An investment of $238 per pilot student was made for hardware. Other investments included infrastructure, bandwidth upgrades, software installations, and teacher training. The Rogers Foundation partnered with other funding providers to support and consult for a seamless roll-out of a multi-year project.
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Four Basic Steps for Grant Writing Success

Grant writing success can be achieved, you must believe that. There are steps involved, ways to move forward through the application process to ensure that your application is read and taken seriously. Grantors receive hundreds of applications for a finite amount of funds. Organized applications are taken seriously and they are more likely to be successful. All things worth doing are worth doing well, and if you do them well each time, grantors will come to look forward to the application packages from XYZ schools. At the start of a new school year, it helps to review some basic truths and use them to devise an application template that is efficient and worthy of review by a foundation.

1. Identify the problem you are trying to solve with the requested funds. That problem usually reveals itself when you look at test data and assess programs you are using. You know what has worked and not worked in your school. Make a list, check those suppositions against the data, and be prepared to tackle them one at a time. Your problems may be new, revealed as a school district’s demographics change. Look at census data, the massive number of baby boomers nearing retirement will create a need for new teachers. They will need professional development, and if the data shows problems in math in grade 4, you may wish to develop a program or project that addresses that need. It is intended to solve the problem.

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Current Grant Opportunities- December 2013

1.    Dreyfus Foundation Educational Grants from the Max and Victoria Dreyfus Foundation
2.    Classroom Grants from the Association of American Educators
3.    Siemens PLM Software Grant from the SME Education Foundation
4.    Smart from the Start Awards from Together Counts
5.    Farm to School Implementation Grants from the United States Department of Agriculture
6.    McCormick Foundation Journalism Grant from the McCormick Foundation
7.    Program Mini-grants from the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation
8.    Carol M. White Physical Education Program from the U.S. Department of Education
9.    Foundation Grants from the Mitsubishi Electric America Foundation
10.  Murray Foundation Educational Grants from the Jerome S. & Grace H. Murray Foundation

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Describing Project Activities in Your Narrative

We have talked about demographics, statistics about your school that help you demonstrate need for the funding you seek. We’ve set the stage for writing the successful proposal you know you can submit to a foundation. You now have a working skeleton or outline to lead you to next steps. Your goals have been set and defined.

We’ll talk today about the how. What activities will you devise to move from concept to success? This is where you start to justify your budget, you can’t provide an activity schedule without the funds for materials and supplies, and the curriculum programs you have identified that will best solve your problem. The step is 6B, Proposed Activities.

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