gRANT WRITING IS AN AWESOME TASK FOR MOST EDUCATORS. Hopefully these pages will give you a starting point. Give yourself a lot of time and contact administrators in your district and state department of education for help. Many grants are catalogued on the Web. Tips and online help are also available. So grab your grant writing partners and get started!

A Grant Writer's Vocabulary

Accountability is the recipient's report of where grant money goes, how it is spent and if it has affected the problem is was supposed to address.

Behavioral Objectives are what the grant is trying to achieve for its client population. Objectives should be measurable so that pre and post data can be collected.

A boilerplate is standardized information that is used every time you write a grant, usually in the narrative summary.

The evaluation is a review completed at the end of the project to see if your grant project did what you wanted it to do.

The funding period is the length of time the grant covers, usually 1-3 years.

A grievance procedure is the process in which applicants can learn why their proposal wasn't funded. Use this to make improvements next time.

Guidelines refer to the funders statement of goals, priorities, eligibility criteria and application procedures. This is the document that tells you what to include in your proposal and in what format.

An indirect cost is a budget category to cover those general administrative costs of operating a project including building rent, depreciation, and mileage. Also referred to as overhead.

In-kind refers to contributions other than money, such as services, facilities and equipment.

A letter of support is a written statement added to proposals. Organizations and individuals supporting your project's efforts write them.

A letter of inquiry states your intent to apply for a grant and give a brief ideal of the nature of your planned project.

A needs assessment states why your project is needed.

A proposal is your written application for grant funds. It explains why the project is needed, who is going to do it and how much it will cost.

Soft money is insecure funding, usually available for a year or less.

The target population is the intended beneficiaries of your project.

Components of Your Proposal

Be sure to follow the guidelines when putting your proposal together. It helps to research the funding source to make sure your proposal fits into the types of projects they like to fund. Don't add anything to the proposal that funders do not ask for. Review your proposal often from the perspective of the funding agency. Ask several colleagues to critically review the proposal and edit, edit, edit! Forget about using jargon and acronyms, and write in terms the average person can understand. Remember to write in the third person. You want your final product to be a highly readable action plan that solves a problem.

Begin with the cover letter. The letter should be addressed to a person and briefly summarize your project.

The title page consists of the project's title, contact person, name, address and phone number of your school district and the date.

The table of contents lists the components of your proposal.

The narrative summary describes your need, how your are going to do with the funds. It is the longest component of your proposal and contains the following:

Describe your school in the introduction. Tell about what you have already done in the area that you are writing the proposal for.

The needs statement links the goals of your school district and the funding agency. It is the makes the argument for funding your proposal.

The participants and target populations are who is going to work on your project and whom it is going to help.

Your goal and objectives are explained next. Write them without jargon, so that anyone can understand them. Don't write too many objectives. Two or three are sufficient. They must be measurable.

Your management plan describes the activities you will be doing to meet your goal and objectives. They should relate directly to the objectives. Involve those folks who wrote letters of support.

The evaluation section outlines your plan for determining the success of your projects. It tells who will be carrying out the evaluation and the data collection methods including data analysis and how the evaluation will be reported. Some funding agencies will require a timeline. A graphic presentation of the timeline is to the point and easily understood.

Your budget lists all the costs of your project. It identifies costs to be met by the funding source and by others like your school district, the PTA or other organizations. The budget needs to be in a format that is easily read.

The staffing section tells who will be working on your project. Some agencies request a listing of staff members and others will want vitas. Others may want each member described in a paragraph.

Dissemination describes how you are going to let others in the educational community know about the success of your project. For example will you write a journal article, present at some conferences or both?

Appendices are visuals that stand alone but enhance the description of your proposal.

These sites contain information on funders and proposal writing.

starThe Foundation Center is a great place to start locating grants to fit your needs.

starGrant Wrangler is a grants listing service offered by Nimble Press at no charge. They make it easy for teachers to search for grants by subject area, grade level, or grant name. With more than $14 million in grants listed, their goal is to help more schools find funding for all areas of learning and growth for K-12 education.

This directory contains documents published in the Federal Register by the U.S. Department of Education.

Carnegie Corporation of New York was created by Andrew Carnegie in 1911 to promote the advancement and diffusion of knowledge and understanding. The Corporation’s capital fund, originally donated at a value of about $135 million, had a market value of $1.44 billion on June 30, 1997. For 1997 the Corporation budgeted $59 million for grants and appropriations.

A. L. Mailman Family Foundation Funding Area: children and families, with a special emphasis on early childhood programs.

The Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance is the official directory of federal grant programs.

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