15 Grants for K-12 Classroom Teachers

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We talk a lot about federal grants. After all, it’s our specialty. We’ve earned more than $44 million for clients over the years in federal grant funding, so we like to think we know a thing or two about how to win one.

But grants aren’t always cumbersome, paperwork-laden monstrosities that take hundreds of manhours to write and administer.

In fact, for many, federal grants aren’t the right funding source at all.

Case in point: classroom teachers.

Teacher out-of-pocket expenses increasing

It’s no secret that K-12 teachers dig into their own pockets to fill gaps in their classrooms.

According to the nonprofit AdoptAClassroom.org, teachers spent an average of $750 in the 2020-2021 school year to buy supplies. The organization says teacher spending has increased 25% since 2015.

Those findings are backed up by a 2019 study by the Economic Policy Institute that found teachers spent an average of $459 every year, and 9 out of 10 weren’t reimbursed by their school or district.

Grants for teachers can make the difference

Any way you slice it, teachers need a way to pay for classroom supplies, equipment, books and instructional materials without spending their own money.

What’s the answer? Grants of course!

Teacher grants are usually smaller dollar figures. Think $100-$1,000.

Even so, it’s enough to make a big difference in a teacher’s classroom.

The best part is these grants generally don’t come with loads of paperwork or intense reporting requirements that take up your precious time and energy. Many accept applications at any time of the year or have a window of a few months when applications are accepted.

There are grants available to pay for supplies, books and other classroom materials. Other teacher grant programs fund professional development, special programs and technology needs.

We’ve compiled a few places to find teacher grants to fund various classroom needs.

Grants for classroom enrichment, including books

American Association of Educators Classroom Grant

Who’s eligible? K-12 teachers

What does it fund? Provides funding for teachers to purchase classroom resources such as books, curriculum or audio-visual equipment. 

When’s the deadline? October and March

How much? $500

 

Dana Brown Teacher Mini-Grants

Who’s eligible? K-12 special education teachers

What does it fund? Materials and programs to aid in the education of children with disabilities.

When’s the deadline? Application window opens in July

How much? Varies

 

Dollar General Youth Literacy Grants

Who’s eligible? K-12 teachers

What does it fund? Pays for new or expansion of existing literacy programs, new technology or equipment to support literacy initiatives and books, materials or software for literacy programs.

When’s the deadline? May 19, 2022

How much? Up to $4,000

 

Ezra Jack Keats Foundation

Who’s eligible? K-12 public school teachers

What does it fund? Funding for educators or librarians to create enriching reading curriculum or programs for students.

When’s the deadline? The open application period is in the spring.

How much? Up to $4,000

 

Fuel Up to Play 60

Who’s eligible? K-12 teachers at schools that are part of the National School Lunch Program

What does it fund?  Funding to increase school's physical activity programs and bring healthy foods to students. Funds can be used for school wellness initiatives, sports equipment and more.

When’s the deadline? The open application period is in the spring.

How much? Up to $4,000

 

National Education Assocation Student Success Grants

Who’s eligible? K-12 teachers who are NEA members

What does it fund? Resource materials, supplies, equipment, transportation, or technology. Some funds may be used to support the professional development necessary to implement the project, but the majority of grant funds must be spent on materials or educational experiences for students. .

When’s the deadline? Sept. 15, 2022

How much? $1,500-5,000

 

Pets in the Classroom

Who’s eligible? K-9 teachers

What does it fund? Funding to purchase and maintain a small classroom pet.

When’s the deadline? June 1, 2022

How much? $50-150

 

Grants for STEM programs

AIAA Foundation

Who’s eligible? K-12 teachers

What does it fund? The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronauts awards grants to teachers who want to incorporate new ways of teaching STEM in their classroom. Funds can be used to purchase laboratory equipment, math and science software, robotics supplies, and other items.

When’s the deadline? June

How much? $200

 

American Chemical Society

Who’s eligible? High school teachers

What does it fund? The American Chemical Society awards the ACS-Hach High School Chemistry Grant to promote dynamic and engaging scientific exploration in students. Funds can be used to purchase laboratory equipment, supplies and instructional materials, but also the cost of professional development opportunities, field studies and science outreach events.

When’s the deadline? June 1, 2022

How much? $1,500

 

Pitsco Education

Who’s eligible? Any teacher, at any level, including homeschool teachers.

What does it fund? The grant is awarded in the form of a gift certificate that may be used to purchase hands-on STEM products, curriculum and more on The Pitsco Education website.

When’s the deadline? First day of every month

How much? $350

 

National Council of Teachers of Mathematics

Who’s eligible? Pre-K-5th grade teachers

What does it fund?  The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics offers a grant for elementary math teachers who have demonstrated a commitment to strengthening their own teaching methods and applying innovative new ides to their classrooms. Applicants must be members of NCTM. Funds may be used for professional development, including college coursework, fees associated with attendance at national conferences and material resources. 

When’s the deadline? May 1, 2022

How much? Up to $6,000

 

Reflex Math

Who’s eligible? Grade 2-6 math teachers

What does it fund? Free access to Reflex's digital math fact fluency solution for their classrooms for the school year. Two educators per school and up to 10 educators per public school district can apply. 

When’s the deadline? Rolling

 

Sol Hirsch Education Fund Grants

Who’s eligible? K-12 teachers

What does it fund? Materials and supplies needed to improve the education of their students, their school, and/or their community in the science of meteorology. The program is administrered through the National Weather Service.

When’s the deadline? Spring 2023

How much? Up to $750

 

Toshiba America Foundation Grants

Who’s eligible? K-12 teachers

What does it fund? Toshiba America Foundation grants fund the projects, ideas and materials teachers need to innovate in STEM classrooms. The foundation is interested in funding innovative projects designed by teachers or small teams of teachers for use in their own schools and classroom.

When’s the deadline? Rolling

How much? Varies

 

Verizon Foundation Education Grants

Who’s eligible? K-12 teachers

What does it fund? Extracurricular activities, integrated programming and teaching education related to STEM. It doesn’t fund classroom computers.

When’s the deadline? Rolling

How much? Varies

Other places to find teacher grants

There are lots of foundations and nonprofits dedicated to helping teachers, but don’t overlook opportunities in your own backyard.

Local banks, credit unions, teachers’ groups, civic clubs and community foundations often have funds specifically to meet teacher needs. A Google search may help you find these opportunities. Additionally, many local and state parent-teacher associations offer classroom grant programs for teachers.

Need some help writing a grant?

Most classroom teacher grants aren’t overly taxing, but you may run into questions you’re not sure how to answer. A good place to get quick answers from professional grant writers is our LinkedIn group. Check it out and get the help you need!

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