With budgets getting cut, providing outstanding educational experiences for students is proving to be a challenge for schools, administration, teachers and parents. However, there are alternative funds available to make sure that students are still able to have a quality and memorable educational experience.
Grants are monies given by an organization for a particular purpose. Grants are some of the simplest requests for funds. If you have an educational opportunity in mind, consider the following tips to help get the ball rolling as you plan a grant proposal and resources currently available in the field of education.
Grant Writing (Tips from Darcy Berus, our development director)
1. Research into grant opportunities has been made easier and far more accessible thanks to the internet. That's great for everyone.
2. Sign up for resources specific to your field. An example would be the Sharing Environmental Education Knowledge (SEEK) Bulletin. SEEK sends out regular emails announcing grant opportunities.
3. Consider exploring small grants made available by vendors in your community. Examples might include your neighborhood Target store or Sam's Club. These often involve relatively modest applications that underscore funds going back into the communities these vendors serve.
4. It is critical to follow guidelines and restrictions (geographic area, audience served, use of funds) identified in each grant application.
5. Just like we teachers expect, grantors look for neatness, proper spelling and grammar and careful adherence to the application.
6. Nonprofit organizations often have resources — including subsidized programs, transportation fees, etc. — available to teachers. The International Wolf Center, for example, has videoconferencing programs available at no cost to qualifying teachers.
For further tips on putting together a competitive grant proposal check out:
Education Grant Resources
- Target grants
- Target Field Trip grants
- Walmart and Sam’s Club grants
- Qwest Teacher and Technology grants
- Sharing Environmental Education Knowledge (SEEK) grant listings
- Education Minnesota grant listings
- Office of Grants Management
- TEACH grants (available for those going to school to become teachers)