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Grant Writing Basics

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  • 1. “BEE” a Successful Grant Writer   Presented by Dr. Jennifer C. Walts School Improvement Specialist drwalts@mac.com “In God we trust; all others must bring data!” Start with what you want:Ask yourself these important questions:* What are my dreams for my classroom? my school?* What local/state agencies/organizations can help make my dreams reality?* What help is available for finding grant sources online?* Do I have administrative support?* Is this something I need? Why? How can I prove it? Begin Planning:Part One: First ImpressionsI. Introduction - think about* Why ~am I writing this grant? ~do I need this grant?* Who ~will benefit from the funding? ~is the population that is targeted? …the demographics of my school? ~can provide letters of support for the grant?* What ~is my goal? ~is my expected outcome? ~am I specifically asking for? ~is my expected outcome? ~process will I go through to achieve the goal? ~will I buy with the grant funds? ~proof do I have that this is a legitimate need?* Where ~will the grant take place? ~will funded items go? Is this reasonable for my space?* When ~will funding become available? ~will the project start and end?* How ~will I implement the grant? Do I have administrative support? ~will I assess my progress? Are the results measureable?
  • 2. “BEE” a Successful Grant Writer  II. Opportunity - what can I highlight?* Can I showcase special guests?* Do I have strong community support?* Will a special activity become possible if I receive the grant?* What are the unique features of the community?* Do I have a source of donations or matching funds?* Does the school already have existing resources to build upon?* Did I pilot this program?III. What is my need?* Why do you need this grant?* What scores prove you need it?* Which surveys prove your need?* Is there a state mandate for improvement?* Why is this important for your district/school/students?* You want computers? iPads? So does everyone else. What are you going to do withstudents on the computer that makes your project unique?Part Two: Doing Your HomeworkI. Research* Where did you get your research? Action research is best because it is specific and personal to your situation.* How does it support your proposal?* Who else has done it?* What experts agree with you?* When? Is your research current? (Technology – fewer than 3 years old)* Research directly related to proposal?II. Planning: How are you going to prepare for excellence?* What did you do to plan/write this proposal?* What workshops did you attend?* What surveys did you take?* Who else is involved? committee? other teachers? parents? local businesses?* What organizations provided research/ideas?* Copies of the successful grants of others?* Does all planning relate to the stated need and objectives?III. Goal* Be prepared to CLEARLY state your goal in measureable outcomes.* Goals must be reasonable and attainable.
  • 3. “BEE” a Successful Grant Writer  IV. Objectives and Evaluation* Objectives must match Needs!* Make sure activities match your objectives! Objective #1 matches Need #1 Evaluation #1 matches Activity #1; evaluation is measurable Objective #2 matches Need #2 Evaluation #2 matches Activity #2; evaluation is measurable Objective #3 matches Need #3 Evaluation #3 matches Activity #3; evaluation is measurable* Evaluations: Based on measurable results* Make sure objectives are measurable! Use % signs. Compare...Evaluation tools can be teacher made tests, state tests, rubrics.* Three objectives/activities/evaluations are plenty* Dont go overboard and do not confuse an objective with an activity. Checking out books...making projects...are activities, not objectives.* A brief timeline is helpful: September-October for pre-testing, set up, organizing November-April for implementation April-May for post-testing, reporting, revisingPart Three: A Convincing ProposalI. Activities and Timeline* Match Activities with Objectives* Make sure reader sees that students will benefit from the grantThis is where you shine! Prove to the reader that if they give you this money, youknow how to spend it. Always make your activities match your objectives. Show howyou are going to spend that money!! Dont surprise a reader. If you are asking forcomputers, tell what you are going to do with them. Be specific!II. Budget* What percent of budget can be spent on equipment, if any?* Will stipends be the same for all teachers? Why? Why not?* Dont ask for it all if you dont need it. Readers can tell when you are trying to fluff it.* Get quotes, community donations, in-kind donations, etc. Hold on to copies of any bids or quotes.* Make sure your budget matches your proposal.* Attach letters of support.* Do you have to match it? Will your school board approve the match? Can you afford the match?III. Final Remarks* Get it postmarked by the deadline!!!