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.” 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
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.
ESRI Livable Communities Grant Series
The goal of this 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 also will 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