Small Grants Program
The Northampton Education Foundation awards grants twice a year to encourage the development of creative and innovative teaching and learning initiatives for the Northampton Public Schools consistent with the district's goals. Through the grant program, we support the preparation of new instructional materials, methods, and innovative teaching programs that are introduced into a classroom. We also fund extracurricular initiatives that are intended to enhance student learning. Since the grant program was initiated in 1991, dozens of projects have received funding. These projects have been proposed by teachers and administrators, often in collaboration with parents, community members, and local organizations. For summaries of projects undertaken since June, 2000, see NEF-Funded Projects.
Small Grant Application Forms: Applications for the 2011-2012 school year are available now. Click here to access the forms for printing. Also, see below for funding guidelines, or see Frequently Asked Questions about the Small Grants to Teachers program..
What We Fund: The grant program aims to enhance the quality of education in the Northampton Public Schools through innovation and creativity, and funds awarded may be used in a variety of ways to achieve these objectives. Curriculum, which defines what students should know and be able to do, is determined by the Northampton School Department. The Foundation aims to fund proposals that present promising ideas and approaches for achieving the district’s curricular goals as well as projects that enhance links with the community. As a result, we will fund, as part of the grant award: the development of new programs and approaches that strengthen student learning; activities involving courses and workshops; the enhancement of teaching skills in particular content areas such as writing, computing, and video production; professional development programs; and the preparation of new materials in collaboration with colleagues in other schools, subject areas, or grade levels. Grant monies may be used to pay such costs as stipends for teachers, release time, consultants, travel to professional meetings or research sites, books and tuition, subscriptions, duplicating, postage, and supplies directly related to the proposal.
What We Don't Fund: The Northampton Education Foundation, under this grant program, will not fund proposals that are exclusively requests for books or materials, technology upgrades, or teacher or in-service training. These types of expenses, however, can be incurred as part of a proposal to enhance teaching and learning.
Who May Apply: We invite grant applications from teachers and administrators in the Northampton public school system, including Smith Vocational School. If sponsored by a teacher or administrator, projects may be initiated by parents, community members, students and/or local organizations and undertaken in collaboration with a teacher or administrator.
Funding and Grant Cycle: The Foundation awards grants of up to $2,000. There are two grant cycles per year. The deadline for the spring grant cycle is in April, for projects to be completed between July 1 and June 30 of the following school year. The deadline for the fall grant cycle is in October for projects to be completed between January 1 and June 30 of the following calendar year. Requests for grant disbursement for both of these grant periods must be submitted by August 15th. Final reports for all grants must also be submitted by August 15th.
2nd and 3rd Year Repeat Grants: In the event that a grant project is successful, a new grant application can be submitted to conduct the same project in a subsequent year. Up to three grants may be awarded for the same project. However, in the third year, the grantee may not apply for more than 1/2 the funds granted in the second year.
Application Procedure: Grant applications are available on this website, at each school and from the superintendent’s office. Please follow the instructions on the RFP carefully, and answer all questions as fully as possible. Ten copies of your proposal should be submitted to the office of the superintendent of schools, 212 Main Street. (We recommend that you use interschool mail or hand deliver your proposals - otherwise make sure you have used enough postage.) Applicants are encouraged to discuss their ideas, grant applications, project concepts, and drafts of proposals with the Small Grants Committee.
Review Process: Grant proposals are evaluated by a review committee, which is appointed on an annual basis. The membership of this committee brings a variety of perspectives to these deliberations. The committee recommends finalists to the Foundation board, and the board announces its recommendations to the School Committee.
Reports & Evaluation: Grant recipients will be asked to submit a final report and an expense record in a timely manner, no later than August 15th. Reports will become part of the Foundation’s resource files.
Last Updated: August 6, 2012