Creative Learning Communities
This Disney Learning Partnership program will provide multi-year grants and other support to schools that seek, in collaboration with their local districts, to design and implement creative teaching strategies and environments that enrich student learning. The focus of this program is to spur schoolwide creative teaching strategies and to develop and disseminate knowledge about the kinds of teaching practices, content, and classroom environments that are most likely to enrich student learning. Elementary schools may apply individually or as part of a consortium. Individual grants will range from $25,000 to $100,000 annually for three years; consortium grants will range from $50,000 to $200,000 annually for three years.
Deadline: June 2
Preparing Tomorrow’s Teachers to Use Technology
This new Department of Education (ED) program’s goal is to help prepare future teachers to use modern learning technologies. School districts are eligible to apply as collaborating partners with higher education faculty and teacher education students. Such teams of faculty, teachers, and students–assisted by professional associations, foundations, and business partners–could use funds to adapt or create technology-rich content and instructional strategies that would be mastered by the future teachers of the group. The program’s director, Tom Carroll, is the former director for technology planning and evaluation for the Schools and Libraries Division of the Universal Service Administrative Co., the group that administers the eRate.
Deadline: June 4
Community Technology Centers
This ED grant provides funding for the development of community technology centers. State and local educational agencies may apply for grants “to promote the development of model programs that demonstrate the educational effectiveness of technology in urban and rural areas and economically distressed communities.” The department is seeking projects that serve diverse populations and that provide technology access to those who typically wouldn’t otherwise have that access. Community technology centers might include activities such as preschool and family programs, after-school programs, adult education, and career development or job preparation. ED has allocated $10 million for the program this year and anticipates that it will award between 40 and 60 three-year grants.
Deadline: June 14
Packard Foundation Education Grants
This grant program of the David and Lucile Packard Foundation supports reading, math and science, school renewal, and other education initiatives. Math and science grants have been used for a range of technology-related initiatives, such as the construction of a math technology lab and to support a high school robotics team. Grants are available nationally, but the foundation places a particular emphasis on school districts in northern California. The Packard Foundation doled out over $9 million in education grants in 1997. The board of directors accepts proposal on a quarterly schedule, with the next deadline indicated below.
Deadline: June 15
Distance Learning and Telemedicine grants
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Utilities Service (RUS) offers grants to encourage and improve telemedicine and distance learning services in rural areas through the use of telecommunications, computer networks, and related technologies. RUS has made available $12.5 million in grants, plus $150 million in loans for the Distance Learning and Telemedicine Program this year. Rural schools may apply for grants to help them invest in the telecommunications facilities and equipment needed for educational resources that might not otherwise be available in rural areas. The program focuses on “structured interactive educational training … over distances.” Community bulletin boards or internet home pages are considered adjuncts to projects, but would not be considered as a primary purpose under the program.
Deadline: July 9
Connections to the Internet
This National Science Foundation (NSF) program helps fund internet connections at K-12 schools, public libraries, and museums. This is a highly competitive, cost-sharing grant that will reward “only highly innovative approaches.” (See story, page 1 for details.) Project costs may include the acquisition and maintenance of hardware and software to establish institutional access to the internet, as well as the installation and recurring charges for a communication channel. Conversely, funds may also be used to acquire internet connections and services from an external service provider. NSF typically awards $15,000 over a two-year period to successful applicants. Consortia may apply for larger awards.
Deadline: July 31
Instructional Materials Development
This NSF program supports the development of instructional materials and assessment tools to improve science, math, and technology education in grades K-12. Projects might range from the substantial revision of existing materials to the creation of entirely new ones, and from addressing a single topic to the integration of several. Projects should “promote the development of model programs that demonstrate the educational effectiveness of technology in urban and rural areas and economically distressed communities.” State and local educational agencies are among those eligible to apply. A preliminary proposal was to have been submitted May 1.
Deadline: August 15
ICONnect Collaboration through Technology
The American Library Association/American Association of School Librarians (ALA/AASL) is taking applications for its 2000 ICPrize for Collaboration through Technology competition. The program will award five $1,000 ICPrizes to collaborative teams of library media specialists and classroom teachers who have demonstrated a meaningful and effective use of internet resources in a completed curriculum unit. Applications must be submitted by an ALA/AASL member and must successfully demonstrate a collaboration between the library media specialist and classroom teacher(s). Applications and specific evaluation criteria are available online.
Deadline: November 1
BellSouth Corp. has announced a $10 million grant initiative from the BellSouth Foundation
to help fully integrate technology into schools. Called BellSouth edu.pwr3 (pronounced ed-joo-power), the program focuses on three areas: Power to Lead, Power to Teach, and Power to Learn. Through Power to Lead, superintendents from around the southeast will take part in a seminar to augment their skills for technology implementation. Power to Teach will make grants benefiting school districts in every state BellSouth serves to help teachers get maximum benefit from their current technology resources. Power to Learn will involve a BellSouth partnership with 3-5 southern schools whose leadership has already committed to comprehensive professional development strategies and thoughtful technology integration plans. Power to Learn will provide grants, services, and consultation to accelerate the efforts of these schools.
Education is Crucial
Crucial Technology, a division of Micron, has announced that it will donate up to $100,000 worth of server memory upgrades to Idaho public schools through the Education is Crucial program. The program is intended to help Idaho schools increase the performance level in their existing computer systems. Idaho schools received $87,000 in memory upgrades last year through the Education is Crucial program, now in its second year. Applications are being handled by the Idaho Department of Education. Schools need only complete an online survey to apply, with memory upgrading to be administered on a needs-first basis.
Philanthropic Ventures Foundation provides small “immediate response” grants to teachers in San Mateo County, Calif. Teachers fax their proposal to the foundation and typically receive a check within a day or two. The foundation has given away $350,000 worth of fax grants to 700 teachers over the last three years. Books, field trips, and equipment purchases–including technology equipment–are among some of the possible uses for funds.
First Energy Corp., of Akron, Ohio, will provide grants of up to $300 to successful applicants from Ohio schools served by the company’s electric utility operators, which include Ohio Edison, The Illuminating Co., Toledo Edison, and Penn Power. Grants may be used for math, science, or technology projects, with preference given to projects that deal with electricity or have a focus on teacher training. Teachers, administrators, and youth group leaders are eligible to apply. Applications will be accepted through Oct. 1. and are available online.
First for Education Grants
Carolina First Corp. has established the Carolina First for Education Foundation with a $12.6 million endowment. The foundation will provide education and community-based grants to teachers and public schools in South Carolina for projects that will help bring the state to the educational forefront, including grants for technology initiatives such as purchasing computers. All grants will be awarded based on evaluation of a written application. For an application form, write to the Carolina First For Education Foundation, P.O. Box 1029, Greenville, SC 29602.
K-12 World Server Grant
NEC Computer Systems Division and JDL Technologies have teamed up to offer 20 Express5800 K-12 World Internet Access Servers through a grant program open exclusively to schools. The grants include a complete solution featuring NEC Express5800 server hardware, JDL’s K-12 World CyberLibrary Server software with SmartFilter option, one day of on-site installation, one year of monthly SmartFilter updates, and one year of toll-free support. By popular demand, the deadline has been extended through June. Contact: JDL Technologies, 5555 West 78th Street, Suite E, Edina, MN 55349-2702; fax (612) 946-1835; eMail NECgrant@jdltech.com.
Deadline: June 30
Sony Language Learning System Grant
Sony audio language lab equipment is designed to help teachers take language instruction to the next level of achievement with powerful, flexible, learning systems that enable a totally interactive experience. All public and private state-certified schools with language programs and a need for a learning system are eligible to apply for a grant from Sony. Applications must be typewritten and should include a state accreditation certificate. Materials to support your application could include videos, promotional brochures, books, pamphlets, or photographs. No more than two items of support should accompany your application. Applications and support materials become the property of Sony Electronics Inc. and will not be returned. Only one application per school will be accepted. The grant recipient will be announced in August. For an official entry form, send an eMail request to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Deadline: June 30
ESRI Livable Communities Grant Series
The goal of this ESRI grant program is to foster and support the integration of geographic information system (GIS) software in public and private school districts. Grant recipients will receive one copy of ESRI’s ArcView Suite for School Districts bundle and license, five building site license copies of the ArcView StreetMap extension and the ArcAtlas global database, one copy of ESRI’s U.S. Streets Database, one single-seat copy of the SchoolSite school mapping/redistricting extension, links to ArcData Online Program, and several related print resources. ESRI will give priority to grant applications demonstrating curriculum and administrative GIS implementation plans, cross-curricular implementation plans, or collaborative efforts with other community organizations or government agencies. Priority will also be given to projects that promote public access to GIS databases. To receive the equipment grant, districts must agree to establish two administrative GIS workstations for boundary planning and facility sitting. Districts must also have five school building sites at which curricular implementation is being fostered in social studies and the sciences. ESRI will award 25 software and materials packages to school districts, valued at $15,000 each.
Deadline: October 1
Learning to Win
Cloudscape, a leader in database management solutions, has announced that is making its Cloudscape 100% Pure Java database available to schools at no charge through the new Learning to Win program. Learning to Win is designed to encourage students to learn the Java programming language and experiment with building applications in Java. Cloudscape says it is the first company to offer free Java SQL databases for schools to use as educational resources.
Schools Online Internet Access
Schools without classroom internet access are eligible to apply for Schools Online equipment grants. The Schools Online grant program offers participating schools simple, cost-effective internet access, together with local support and training in its use. Participating schools are asked to designate a committed person to manage the equipment and participate in training. Schools are also asked to provide either a telephone line along with an Internet Service Provider (ISP) account for dial-up access, or a network connection to the world wide web. Schools Online has helped over 5,000 classrooms get internet access in just over two years. Schools Online is supported by corporate, educational, and individual partners.
$93 million from U.S. Department of
To help create high-quality after-school programs, $93 million to 176 communities nationwide under the 21st Century Community Learning Center program. The grants will enable schools to stay open longer in order to provide a safe haven for children. Programs include technology education and other supervised activities. The department received 2,000 applications requesting $900 million in funding under this grant competition. In response to the high demand for funding, President Clinton has requested in his 2000 budget proposal a $600 million allocation for next year’s competition.
$3.3 million in computer equipment from Gtech Corp.
For its new After School Advantage program, $3.3 million worth of computers, software, and volunteer hours over the next three years to schools and community centers in states where the lottery operator has a presence. Selected schools will receive in average of $20,000 in equipment and volunteer hours under the program. Gtech will work with each site to design and develop a fully operational computer center for after-school use. The program is initially being rolled out in California, Georgia, Kentucky, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island, and Texas and will later spread to all other states in which Gtech operates.
$265,000 in equipment and services from Sprint PCS
For its new “Stay-in-Touch” pilot program, $265,000 worth of phones and air-time to seven Chicago high schools. The Stay-in-Touch program, being piloted in selected Chicago Public Schools, aims to foster improved communication between teachers and parents and to bolster high school student attendance. The program will provide Sprint PCS phones with free air-time to all 9th and 10th grade homeroom teachers in the participating schools. The idea is that the teachers would be able to contact the parents of students who are not in class.
$150,000 from Citigroup Foundation
To fund the installation of Classroom Inc. career simulation software, $150,000 to 125 schools in South Dakota. Combined with funds from the South Dakota Department of Education and the South Dakota Community Foundation, the grant will include the installation of Classroom Inc. as well as computer training for teachers. Classroom Inc. software simulates “real-life” workplace experiences in a number of career categories, including banking and economics, the environment, healthcare, the hospitality industry, civics, and publishing. Students work in teams under the guidance of teachers, using the software to build and run a business over the course of a semester or full school year.
$128,000 from MediaOne
For its COOL Awards for Outstanding Educators, $128,000 split among 16 winning teams of teachers and administrators from around the country. The COOL program, or Community Outreach and Online Learning initiative, is designed to encourage educators to work as teams to develop innovative classroom applications for video and internet technologies. Each winning team, composed of three teachers and one administrator, received a cash grant of $8,000, plus four computers, internet training, and an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C., where an awards ceremony was held. Teams were judged based on creativity, leadership, participation, and outcomes.
$60,000 from LSI Logic Corp.
To purchase computer equipment, software, and other materials, $60,000 to Milpitas High School in California. Proceeds from LSI Logic’s annual 10k run and 5k walk will help the high school put state-of-the art technologies in its new math and science building, set to open in the fall. In its 9-year history, the LSI Logic Classic Run has raised nearly $400,000 for the Milpitas Unified School District. Over 600 people participated in this year’s event.
$25,000 from Lucent Technologies
To help launch a technology academy, $25,000 to Dieruff High School in Allentown, Pa. The academy, which could open for the 2000-01 school year, would prepare students for careers in new technologies. It would be the fifth specialized academy in the Allentown School District, with others focusing on industries such as the arts, healthcare, science, and fitness. Dieruff’s plans also include a mentorship program with Lucent.
$10,000 from KPMG
For the support of improvements in technology education, $10,000 to the Fairfax Public Schools Education Foundation. Projects might include expansion of computer labs, software purchases, and the development of specialized technology courses. KPMG, an accounting, tax, and consulting firm, said it will make the donation annually.