Classroom Grants – The Impact
The 2021-22 Classroom Grant program has moved to a fall timeline. We have made this decision to better align with the needs of the students and the schedules of dedicated teachers who apply for our grants. The application process is open with an October deadline, in order to get the projects in the hands of teachers during the same academic year they request funds. We feel this will better impact the almost 18,500 students of Bend-La Pine Schools.
The academic year for 2020-2021 was, of course, unique in the history of Bend-La Pine Schools (BLS). Because most of the year was conducted in the environment of Comprehensive Distance Learning (CDL), our typical grant cycle and amounts were impacted. With that in mind, we were able to award $30,000 in classroom grants both to support CDL and physical classrooms. In fact, one grant request we awarded will reach every one of the roughly 275 elementary school classrooms in BLS in the upcoming year. In a typical year, the Foundation impacts roughly 5,000 students in BLS through our various programs. In 2019, we awarded over $105,000 in STEM, art, music, and wellness classroom grants to teachers/schools in Bend, La Pine, & Sunriver!
Classroom Grants provide valuable resources for our local public schools. Twice a year (spring & fall) the Foundation provides financial and resource support to public school educators on a district-wide level for high impact, academically proven, innovative projects with solid implementation and evaluation plans in the areas of STEM, art, music, and wellness. We serve to bridge the gap between the educational community and the business community in Bend, La Pine, and Sunriver.
Donated funds pay for innovative programs not mandated or funded by the state or district, but which support a quality, equitable education that challenges students and enhances learning. State funding for education is inadequate for many K-12 enrichment programs and resources are limited for funding of innovative programs. The Foundation receives no money from State or Federal governments or agencies. We are 100% funded from private funding. The Foundation directly supports hands-on student programs, purchasing equipment and materials, funding visiting artists and scientists and providing an opportunity for educators to provide learning that meets real world needs and student interests. Funding priorities are for high-need schools (Title 1 or high percentage of students on Free & Reduced Meals program) and programs that have a strong connection to BLS curriculum goals and State standards.