Teachers - Apply Here!
The Ashland Schools Foundation is pleased to announce that we will be continuing our Impact Grant program for the remainder of the school year. There are considerable changes to the program this year - please read the announcement below.
The 2021 Impact Grant Application Form is available for download at the bottom of this page.
January 29, 2021
To all staff of the Ashland School District:
The Ashland Schools Foundation Impact Grant Program is OPEN and taking applications! There are LOTS of changes that will make it easier to apply, along with being responsive to your needs. Please read below!
Our board wants to make the ASF Grant program as effective as possible as well as easier for teachers to get what you need. In the past, the grants were limited to “hands-on projects” for students in the classrooms. With the limitations of distance learning, those hands-on projects haven’t been possible. So we’re practically throwing out the rule book, and asking teachers to apply for whatever they need! Do you have a great idea but can’t get it done because you don’t have the materials, books, software, equipment, training? Then let us help! Is there a workshop with a really great teaching idea but you need help paying for it? Send us an application and tell us about it!
The only caveat is that all of these changes are creating a lot of unknowns in the grant process. Once we get into accepting/reviewing/approving grant applications we may need to make some changes or put some restrictions in place. We will appreciate you working with us on trying to build a flexible and responsive grant program that’s equitable across the district, so our donors’ gifts will be doing the best for our students and teachers.
For this year we have opened up the process in the following ways:
- Who can apply – what is eligible for funding? As in the past, any of the District’s teachers, education specialists (i.e. librarians, reading/math specialists, etc) are eligible to apply, but we’ve removed most restrictions in what’s eligible to be funded! Funding continues to go towards education-based needs – and pretty much anything to do with your students’ education is on the table. We will be looking for you to tell us how your grant idea supports the ASF Vision Statement: The Ashland Schools Foundation empowers educators, embraces diversity, promotes inclusion, and advocates for a vibrant, holistic education for every student. It’s also possible that we’ll be able to support teachers in their professional development, but this is a new area for us. Funding will depend on how many grant requests we receive. In-class activities will be given first priority.
- You can ask for anything that will be implemented anytime in 2021. This means you could ask for a grant for winter, spring or fall educational activities or needs. If you’re applying for professional development, we will also consider summer workshops.
- We’ve removed the grant deadline! You can apply anytime you have the grant application completed. We require your school’s principal to sign off on the grant, but we want you to send the grant to ASF and the Principal at the same time so our grant committee can begin the review process as soon as possible. Our plan is to get word back to you within 7-10 days. A funding decision or an explanation of why a funding decision may take more time will be sent to you. During that time, we may reach out to ask more about your grant, or to work with you on areas that appear to be problematic for funding. We are in the process of working out the details with the district business office for the timing of grant coding and spending under this new system. We will let you know once you are approved for a grant.
- We’ve removed the amount per grant/classroom limits. If you have a really great idea, even if it’s expensive, we want to hear about it! If we can’t fund it ourselves, maybe we can work with you on locating additional funding. If we want to fund a larger project, we may move it out of the Impact Grant funding pool and into our larger Education Support Grant Fund so we don’t deplete the Impact Grant money available for smaller projects and needs.
On the subject of money, we’re kicking off the program with a $25,000 budget (this is close to our typical 9-month budget) and are prepared to increase those funds if the response requires it. In order to ensure equity and opportunity for all, we are dividing the $25,000 into a budgeted amount for each school site, roughly determined on numbers of students and the amount of grant requests in the past. These budgeted amounts will be held for applications from your school through MARCH 31. Beginning APRIL 1, any remaining funds will go into a general pool that can be awarded to any grant application, no matter the site. If one site is very active in their applications, we may choose to add funds into their budget without impacting other sites’ budgeted funds. By April 1 if there is not much remaining for a general pool, we may opt to add funds into the general pool for additional grants.
The school budgets are as follows. These funds will be held in place through March 31 so all school sites will have an opportunity at grant funds for the first two months. These are not the limit of the funds for your school, so feel free to apply for more than the budgets below. If we see the need, we’ll add more funds into the Impact Grant Fund to increase opportunities and fund more projects and needs!
o AHS: $8000
o AMS: $6000
o BELLVIEW: $2500
o HELMAN: $2500
o JOHN MUIR: $1500
o WALKER: $2500
o WILLOW WIND: $2000
- We have a NEW IMPACT GRANT APPLICATION FORM (attached)! We have simplified the questions, while still requesting the info we need in order to make informed decisions about your grant request. The budget form is included in the application. If you need to add more detail, feel free to request a full budget form. It is a PDF fill-in, so make sure you download/save the form to your computer – then open it with Adobe to fill it in and save to your computer. You might do a test and fill in one field, save, close and reopen to make sure your system is saving the new info added. Mac computers, particularly, can be tricky here so make sure it doesn’t say “Preview” in the upper corner or it will only be saving it on your computer in preview mode and the info won’t travel when you email it. If you need my help, or want to do a trial run before you fill everything in, please feel free to reach out to me!
We’re excited about these changes, and look forward to working with all of you to give you the tools you need to help you teach, and your students to learn and for both of you to have fun doing it! Please reach out with any questions you have - if we don’t know the answer we’ll be happy to try to figure it out! This email is attached as a Word document, so it should be easy for you to save for future reference. Also attached is the new Impact Grant application form. Please let us know if you run into any issues with the form – it’s brand new!
Thanks so much for your dedication to our students, schools and education in general. We know it’s been a tough year – and we hope these grants will energize you and lift your spirits!