Grant Information

Grant Application Deadlines and Documents

YEF Program: Girl with ipadThe 2015-16 grant cycle is open and applications are being accepted through March 18, 2015.
Please direct any inquiries to Julie Eneman at jeneman@aol.com or 207.363.0253.

Download the 2015-2016 grant application and evaluation.
Download the grant scoring rubric worksheet.

Download an example of a completed grant.

Frequently Asked Questions

How are grant applications evaluated?

A panel composed of unaffiliated educators and YEF directors reviews all applications and scores them based on the criteria specified in the grant application and rubric. The scores are used as a guide in discussions by the Board of Directors to decide which applications will be funded by the Foundation. The YEF Board of Directors makes the final decisions on which proposals to fund.

If I or one of my colleagues received a YEF grant last year for a project, can I reapply for funding for the same project in subsequent years?

YEF grants are intended to encourage creativity and innovation in the classroom and to fund exceptional projects that are outside the normal school budgeting process. If a grant-funded project has proven its educational value, it is assumed that the school system will include it in future years as part of the regular budget. Therefore, it is unlikely–though not impossible–that the same or very similar projects would be funded for multiple years. YEF considers its grants primarily as funding for seed projects and ideas.

How important is it for me to collaborate with other York educators in my proposed grant project?

While it is not absolutely necessary, creativity may be enhanced and completing the grant application may be facilitated by working with colleagues. In addition, two of the criteria used for grant evaluation–impact on colleagues and number of students benefiting from project–are both influenced by having multiple educators participating in the grant. For more thoughts on why grant-making organizations frequently encourage collaboration, read Collaboration Counts! from Techlearning.com.

What time commitment is required to complete the application? What assistance is available to complete the application?

The current application has 10 questions. Two questions ask for budget details. Three questions ask for details of personnel, students and timeline for the project. This leaves five questions to develop the project idea and is the most time consuming portion of the application. Generally speaking, if you already have the idea for the application fully thought out, you can expect to spend two to three hours on the application. If you use the application itself to develop your idea, then it will be a longer time commitment. The grant committee has members who are available to talk through the questions with you. You are encouraged to seek the support of colleagues to share the workload.

Do I have to wait until June to find out if I have been awarded a grant? Can I apply for and receive a grant during the current school year?

All available 2014-2015 grants have already been awarded. Applications for the 2015-2016 school year are due by March 11, 2015. The applications received at that time will be reviewed in May, and the awards will be announced by mid-June.

Why June?

Teachers are encouraged to think about projects and curriculum throughout the current school year. When a project begins to develop into an idea for a grant, teachers have time in school to connect with colleagues and the building administrators to work out the details. Having a June grant award allows time over the summer to order materials or to schedule professional development activities, as well as to further elaborate on lessons connected to the project. Ideally, the grant project is ready to be implemented at the start of a new school year or whenever the curriculum content is covered in that school year.

What does YEF consider as “materials (not) covered in the school’s operational budget” when reviewing a grant application?

YEF’s mission is to provide funds to supplement classroom instruction and materials, not replace funding for standard school texts, supplies, and materials. If items in a grant application are traditionally included in a school budget, then it is generally not appropriate for YEF to allocate money for those items. However, if there are items in a grant application which are typically paid for through the school budget, but are critical to a proposed project, then it may be appropriate to request YEF funding. An example to illustrate: In a proposal for a literacy project, the applicant may request funds for chapter books, which are specific to a new instructional model or which support a curriculum topic. The application would need to clearly identify the context for these books, such as professional development with a literacy expert, or a guest author invited to your school. A straightforward application request for books or other materials would most likely be denied without a clear connection to a related curriculum or instructional goal.

Is there a specific dollar limit to YEF grant requests?

No.  All requests will be considered as long as there is justification for the money and there are sufficient funds available. YEF limited its first-year grant requests to match our anticipated fundraising. Subsequently, specific restrictions have been removed. We will not know exactly what funds will be available for the 2015-2016 award cycle until our final fundraiser is completed. To date, we have awarded individual grants as large as $5,000. If we are not able to fully fund a large grant request in this grant cycle, we will speak with the applicant directly regarding any limitations YEF may have. We encourage you to speak with a grant committee member before the application deadline if you would like more information about available funds. In the future, we hope to network with other community resources in order to increase the total grant fund pool.