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Proposals that win grants for K-12 education have many predictable information needs. Applicants that have such information at the ready before the announcement of a grant opportunity greatly improve the likelihood of funding.

 

Applicants may not need every item listed here for every description of commitment and capacity; however, among the proposal narrative elements they should anticipate are: history of commitment, capacity development plans, plans to leverage resources, and experience and coordination.

 

History of Financial and Programmatic Commitment:

  1. History of growth of local budgets for similar programs or initiatives (from outset if possible)
  2. History of growth of applicant’s commitment of staff to similar programs or initiatives
  3. History of resources dedicated to local programs or initiatives similar to the one proposed:
  • Materials and supplies (e.g., curricular materials, software subscriptions)
  • Infrastructure (e.g., networks, computers, telecommunications, software)
  • Assessment instruments and evaluation processes
  • Specialized training (e.g., pre-service, in-service, credit-awarding courses)
  • Reimbursements for professional development (e.g., tuition, course completion)
  • Collaboration with other project-related agencies (e.g., in proposal planning)

 

Capacity Development Plans:

  1. Year-by-year plan to develop programmatic capacity during the grant period
  2. Year-by-year plan to absorb related costs (as specific and quantified as possible)
  3. Plan for follow-up services, as needed, for participants during grant period

 

Leveraging Resources:

  1. Federal funds  – recent history related to new proposal (e.g., sources, amounts, purposes)
  2. State funds  – recent history related to new proposal (e.g., sources, amounts, purposes)
  3. Foundation funds  – recent history related to new proposal (e.g., sources, amounts, purposes)
  4. Corporate funds – recent history related to new proposal (e.g., sources, amounts, purposes)
  5. Local funding – recent history related to new proposal (e.g., sources, amounts, purposes)

 

Experience and Coordination:

  1. Earlier experience with the same funder and/or the same funding program, if any
  2. Earlier experience with funder’s other programs related to the present grant program, if any
  3. Relationship or relevance to the funder’s other grant programs or initiatives, if any

 

Later posts will cover information needs for other aspects of educational grant proposals.

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