Excellence in Classroom Teaching Awards

Curriculum Associates is offering its fifth annual award for teachers who demonstrate excellence in classroom teaching. The company—a longtime publisher of print, video, software, and internet-based learning programs—will make three awards in the form of appointments to its Excellence in Teaching Cabinet. Candidates must submit a 500- to 750-word proposal for a project that will create a unique, high-quality experience in the classroom. Applicants are encouraged to be creative in their submissions and remember that winning projects will not be implemented until the 2002-03 school year. New cabinet members receive a $1,000 grant toward the implementation of a proposed project and $500 to spend on related Curriculum Associates products. They’ll also have the ability to provide feedback to the company and field-test new products in the classroom. K-8 teachers from the United States and Canada may apply. Winners will be notified on or about May 31, 2002.

Deadline: March 15

Contact: Jackie Dawson, (978) 667-8000

NFIE Innovation Grants

The National Education Association’s National Foundation for the Improvement of Education (NFIE) will award up to 200 Innovation Grants of $2,000 each to teams of two or more public school teachers, education support professionals, and/or faculty in public institutions of higher education who collaborate to develop and implement innovative ideas that result in high student achievement. Grant funds may be used for resource materials, supplies, equipment, transportation, software, and professional fees. Funds may also be used for professional development necessary to implement the innovative idea.

Deadline: March 15


Opportunities Program

Congress has appropriated $12.4 million for grants through the Commerce Department’s Technology Opportunities Program (TOP) for fiscal year 2002. TOP grants aim to use digital network technologies to serve the public interest by solving critical challenges facing individual communities. Each application should identify specific problems and propose innovative solutions. Applicants may request up to a total of $750,000 in funds. Usually, awards range between $200,000 and $750,000. The program is very competitive. Last year, the program received more than 600 applications collectively requesting more than $367 million. Grant recipients under this program will be required to provide matching funds toward the total project cost. Up to 50 percent of the total project cost will be awarded, unless the applicant can document extraordinary circumstances warranting a grant of up to 75 percent. Applications must be mailed or hand delivered by 8 p.m. on the deadline date.

Deadline: March 21

Contact: (202) 482-2048 or


Alan Shephard Technology

in Education Awards

Educators who demonstrate the effective use of technology in the classroom are eligible to win a laptop computer through this brand-new program from the National Association of Education Technology Specialists (NAETS). The organization will grant its first annual Alan Shephard Technology in Education Award to an educator who has demonstrated innovation, commitment, and excellence in the teaching and development of technology programs in schools. The award is open to all educators and technology personnel at the school or district level who have demonstrated exemplary use of technology either to foster lifelong learners or make the learning process easier. The winning nominee will be flown to an awards ceremony where he or she will be presented with a commemorative trophy engraved with his or her name and a laptop computer. The honoree’s name will also go onto a master trophy to be housed at the NAETS home office. A school principal must nominate the candidate from the school, and an associate superintendent or superintendent must nominate all district-level personnel. Nominations for the award are to be submitted to the NAETS office between February 1 and April 30. The selection committee will make a final choice by May 27.

Deadline: April 30


Help Us Help Grants

Oracle Corp.’s Help Us Help Foundation is a nonprofit organization that assists K-12 public schools and youth organizations in economically challenged communities through grants of computer equipment and software. Funding comes from Oracle Corp., as well as from other charitable donations. Grant recipients will receive internet appliances from the New Internet Computer Co. and Kyocera Mita laser printers to outfit 10, six, or five classrooms with five computers and one printer each. Eligible schools must document that their school is designated low-income or provide test scores that show their students are struggling to meet achievement standards. In addition, schools already must have in place a technology infrastructure to support the internet appliances.

Deadline: May 31


AOL Time Warner

Foundation Grants

The AOL Time Warner Foundation supports technology-related projects in four major areas of priority: Equipping Kids for the 21st Century, Extending Internet Benefits to All, Engaging Communities in the Arts, and Empowering Citizens and Civic Participation. Rather than simply providing grant monies, the foundation prefers to enter into sustainable strategic partnerships with organizations that have a demonstrated commitment to pioneering innovative ways of meeting these priorities. As a general rule, the foundation does not fund unsolicited proposals except in very special circumstances. Proposals are reviewed throughout the year, and the foundation responds to requests within eight to 12 weeks.

Contact: (800) 818-1066 or

ClassLink Grants

Sponsored by cell phone manufacturer Nokia and a consortium of cell phone service providers (organized by the Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association), this program gives cell phones and free calling time to classroom instructors. The program is designed to create additional in-class learning opportunities by enabling students to call subject matter experts during school time, and also to provide instructors with emergency access to telephones to ensure their safety and the safety of their students. To date, more than 30,000 cell phones and 12 million hours of free phone time have been donated. Among the innovative uses of the system has been a project in a private school in Florida that allows each teacher to place his or her homework assignment on wireless voice mail daily, so that parents can call in and confirm their children’s homework assignments. Grants are made by individual local wireless providers; to find out if your provider is participating in the program, go to the ClassLink web site.

Intel Foundation Grants

Intel offers a wide range of support for many technology- and science-related initiatives. The company’s two main grant programs are the Intel Model School Program, which provides every school in the United States with the opportunity to apply for potential seeding of equipment and matches companies with schools to provide end-to-end solutions; and the Teach to the Future Program, which has pledged $100 million to train 400,000 teachers in the use of technology by 2003. Combined with software and equipment discounts from companies such as Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Premio, and Toshiba, Teach to the Future represents approximately a half-billion dollars invested by leading U.S. computer firms in bringing technology to the classroom. Applications for each of these programs can be found on the web sites below.

Lightware Education

Spotlight Program

Lightware, a producer of ultraportable, affordable projection technology, and PLUS Corp. of America, a leader in innovative projection solutions, have announced a new program called Education Spotlight. Through the program, Lightware and PLUS will donate three projectors and an electronic copyboard to a selected school each quarter, reflecting a commitment to increase the effective use of multimedia learning in K-12 education. Applicants are asked to give a unique example of how the projectors will be used when applying for the award. Recipients are chosen based on the creativity of their response, and PLUS and Lightware will share innovative applications with other educators on the Lightware web site. Oregon’s Ogden Middle School became the first recipient in November.

MarcoPolo Professional Development Grants

The MCI WorldCom Foundation provides states and school districts with on-site professional development for K-12 teacher trainers on how to incorporate internet content into the classroom. The training sessions use print and online materials developed by the MarcoPolo Partnership, a consortium of leading educational organizations dedicated to creating high-quality internet content for the classroom. The training sessions are led by professionally trained internet education specialists, and all attendees receive copies of the MarcoPolo Teacher Training Kit.

MathSoft Educational Grants

MathSoft, a provider of math, science, and engineering software, has two grant programs available: the StudyWorks Innovative Teaching Grant Program and the Conference Presenter Grant Program. Through the former, educators and schools can receive a lab grant for 25 StudyWorks for Schools licenses, as well as additional licenses for the school’s media center. Interested applicants must submit a detailed proposal explaining how they would incorporate StudyWorks software into their curriculum. MathSoft also awards Conference Grants to provide stipends for educators attending math, science, or technology conferences who will be presenting a session or workshop using StudyWorks, Mathcad, or Axum. Educators interested in the program should submit a proposal of their conference session or workshop. Grant recipients will receive a grant of $100 or $200. Prospective applicants should consult the Mathsoft web site for program information and application details.

Contact: MathSoft Inc., Studyworks Grant Program, 101 Main Street, Cambridge, MA 02142; fax (617) 577-8829.

PowerUP Grants

PowerUP: Bridging the Digital Divide, an initiative formed by such partners as the AOL Foundation, Waitt Family Foundation, Case Foundation, YMCA, and Corporation for National Service, seeks to serve underserved youth in the United States through technology education and training. Based in schools and community centers around the country, PowerUP centers will provide young people with access to the wide range of content and information on the internet and help them develop additional skills they need to succeed in the 21st century. PowerUP is providing grants to local communities who wish to develop PowerUP sites. Information on grant criteria and application procedures is available on the PowerUP web site.

Teach America!

Through its Teach America! program, the Gateway Foundation has promised to provide free technology training to 75,000 educators in public and private schools. Successful applicants will receive one year of free access to an online database containing more than 400 technology training courses, which run the gamut from word processing, to web site design, to spreadsheets, to computer-aided drafting. Applicants can be individual teachers or school district media representatives. Applicants must file a short note indicating their reasons for wanting access to the online training program and their plans for using their knowledge in the classroom.