An Overview Of Education Foundation Grant Initiatives
GCS Education Foundation
The Greeneville City Schools (GCS) Education Foundation is an independent, community-based, non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. The organization's Board of Trustees assume an advocate's role while seeking to enhance the educational opportunities offered to all students in the Greeneville City School System through solicitation of funds, and greater involvement from parents, businesses, and the community at-large.
One of the primary goals of the GCS Education Foundation is to provide funding for innovative projects that reach beyond the scope of the school system's regular operating budget. Since its beginning in November 2002, this goal has been realized through the annual "American Education Week Grant" program. (Now called the S.E.E.D. - Supplying Essential Education Dollars - Grant.)
In the fall of 2009, the GCS Education Foundation launched a new program called "FOCUS Grant". Both programs are aimed at providing an opportunity for teachers to seek funding for their creative ideas and educational tools that will enhance the Greeneville City School system's standard curriculum.
The following pages provide additional information about the "S.E.E.D. Grant" and the "FOCUS Grant", as well as some tips about getting started in the process of applying for these awards.
The S.E.E.D. Grant
(Formerly called American Education Week Grant.)
These are typically "large" grants (up to $5,000 awarded annually) for teacher/classroom projects, teaching teams, and school or system-wide projects. Grant applications are accepted annually, in the spring semester, and awarded in early May. Award winners must be able to implement their program in the next school year, and provide an evaluation report to the Education Foundation at the end of that same school year.
One of the goals of the GCS Education Foundationis to provide funding for projects that reach beyond the scope of the school system’s regular operating funds. In November 2002, this opportunity began as an annual event showcasing American Education Week. The focus of S.E.E.D. Grant requests do not need to revolve around the celebration of American Education Week, but should reflect the spirit behind American Education Week: providing students with creative learning experiences.
It is the intent of the Education Foundationthat the process be as simple as possible for applicants, and that the evaluation process be both objective and impartial. The Education Foundationhas budgeted $5000 to award to applicants.
By applying, you are agreeing to spend the money as your application describes, and to provide financial and anecdotal reports to the Education Foundation at a future date .
A history of American Education Week Grant awards can be found at the end of this document.
Small grants (under $500) for teachers/teaching teams focused on classroom programs or projects that may be smaller than those eligible for American Education Week Grants. Up to $4,000 is available annually. Grant applications are accepted any time throughout the school year (August through May). The Education Foundation aims to respond to each grant request within two weeks of receipt of each application.
Newly offered in fall of 2009, the FOCUS Grant program is aimed at providing funding (when other funding sources are not available) for educational projects or program opportunities that arise anytime during the school year. These educational projects and programs are typically somewhat smaller and less costly than those represented in American Education Week Grant request, but have a broad impact none-the-less. FOCUS Grant requests will be accepted and considered throughout the school year, as long as Education FoundationFOCUS Grant funds remain available.
The following pages provide helpful information about the Education Foundation's grant process. Reading this information and following the grant application guidelines will assure that your application receives proper consideration.
What do GCS Education Foundationgrants support?
GCS Education Foundation-funded programs should enhance, but not duplicate, the Greenville City School system's standard curriculum. The Education Foundation invites grant requests seeking to fund innovative, creative ideas that fall outside the ordinary school budget. Ideal projects are those that encourage and demonstrate a partnership between teachers, schools, disciplines, and local community resource agencies.
GCS Education Foundation grants are not meant to be used to help underwrite basic school needs, project awards, prizes, or consumables.
Who decides whether or not a project receives funding?
The GCS Education Foundation Grant Review committee, which is comprised of members of the Education Foundation Board of Trustees, thoughtfully reviews each grant request.
How are the applications reviewed?
FOCUS Grant requests are forwarded via email to the Grant Review committee members for their individual evaluation of overall content, value, students served, and the project or request's relationship to current curriculum standards.
S.E.E.D.Grant requests are forwarded to the Grant Review committee in hard copy form, within a notebook containing all other AEW Grant applications received before the annual deadline. Each Grant Review committee member preliminarily scores each grant request according to a basic rubric. Some of the items addressed in the rubric are: the quality of the application format; the content; the number of students served; and the cost value. Next, the committee comes together to review their findings. The decision to fund a request is reached by consensus.
In fairness to all applicants, guidelines and deadlines (when mandated) are strictly adhered to. Of course - applying does not guarantee an award. Remember that available funding and competition for funding is an unpredictable element of the process.
Am I limited to one request?
Is it possible that my request could be partially funded?
Yes. Applications chosen for award may be funded at a percentage of the request. In your grant description, please address the issue of partial funding. For example: (amounts in this example are non-specific) "I am requesting $3000, but if you can award me $2000 I'll do this ..., and with $1000 I'll do this ..." PLEASE NOTE - If you do not include a plan for partial funding the grant committee will assume that you will only accept full funding.
How can I get started?
•· Analyze your idea or project based on the defined scope of the grant.
•· Collaborate with others to make your project more meaningful and affective.
•· Search the school system to be sure your project is not being duplicated elsewhere.
•· Note the grant application guidelines provided as you assemble your grant request. Pay close attention to providing necessary copies of your request, obtaining approval signatures, and to deadlines (when mandated).
•· Contact the GCS Education Foundation's executive director to help resolve questions or provide guidance.
What are some successful factors to consider?
•· The grant proposal should demonstrate creativity and innovation in educational programming and target a significant number of GCS students.
•· Whenever possible, proposals should demonstrate collaboration between schools, educators, outside local community resources, and parents.
•· The proposal must be complete and in compliance with any deadlines.
•· Applications should be concise in content, typed, and understandable for non-educators.
•· Please avoid requesting funding for prizes, snacks, or other consumables.
Where's the application?
There is no application "form" to complete. A printed version of the S.E.E.D. Grant Guidelines is available by selecting the "Documents & Forms" tab on our website.
For a FOCUS Grant, simply follow the guidelines below to submit your request:
For FOCUS Grants -
Prepare a title page which includes your name, your principal's name, the name of your school, the name of your project, and the amount of funding you are requesting.
Provide a brief narrative summarizing your project and the need the project addresses. Include mention of your project's specific educational goals and objectives. Briefly explain how you plan to implement your project and measure its success.
Include a budget. Please indicate if partial funding is an option.
Include any additional information such as photos, or price comparisons, etc., if you think doing so would be beneficial to the committee members as they review your request.
Save your FOCUS Grant request as a PDF, make sure your principal has approved your request, and then email it to: email@example.com
For the S.E.E.D. Grant-
The Education Foundation will email an American Education Week Grant application packet to each teacher in early February. A printed, downloadable version of the S.E.E.D. Grant Guidelines is available through the "Documents & Forms" tab on our website. The packet includes these details about the application process for the grant, and a guideline for submitting a grant request:
I. Cover Page - 1 page
Include the name of your school, your name and signature, your principal's name and signature, the event / purchase name, and the dollar amount of your request.
II. Project description - maximum 3 pages
Include a description of your request, addressing:
information about the main focus of your event / purchase
is this a new initiative or a continuation of an existing program
your implementation plan for the event / purchase
how many students will be served
how you will spend the funds you are requesting
Please direct any additional questions to the GCS Education Foundation'sexecutive director:
GMS (Cindy Monroe) / $2,400 / Digital Visual Presenters
GHS Jr. ROTC (Lt. Col. (Ret.) Kirchmeier / $1,600 / Flight Simulators
(Note: 2010 was the first year we offered FOCUS Grants and we ended the school year with an excess of $1,846.00 in our FOCUS Grant Award budget, which we elected to apply to the American Education Week Grant pool. This enabled us to award a total of $6,846.00)
GHS (Jamie House) / $450* / "Flip For Flips" video cameras