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What We Do

Classroom Grants


Online Application

Applications must be submitted before 4 pm on February 1 to be considered.

Eligibility and Deadlines

The Grand Island Public Schools Foundation awards mini-grants in two rounds on an annual basis. Mini-grants are designed to fund educational opportunities for students that are not available through the school district's general budget. Only applicants with a email address are eligible for grants.

  • Classroom Mini-grants will be considered for:
    • Classroom projects that require out-of-the-ordinary supplies, educational software (for student use), etc. NO Field Trips this Year, No GUESTS in Buildings (they could be virtual)
    • Applicants must demonstrate the impact on and the benefit to students. The committee looks favorably upon co-operative grants. No intermixing of classes or big groups.
    • Additionally, the committee is concerned with equity. A project that benefits all classrooms in a school building at one level or more will carry more points. 
    • The committee reserves the right to make exceptions. 
  • Classroom Mini-grants will not be considered for:
    • Document cameras (Elmos, iPevos, etc)
    • Smart boards
    • Teacher stipends
    • T-shirts
    • Alternative seating
    • Food (unless directly related to the project)
    • The committee reserves the right to make exceptions.

Round 1 Deadlines:

  • August 15 - open
  • September 30 at 4:00 pm - closed
  • October - awards announced
  • Projects should begin after November 1

Round 2 Deadlines:

  • December 15 - open
  • February 1 at 4:00 pm - closed
  • March - awards announced
  • Projects should begin after March. This could include summer school and next fall.


Frequently Asked Questions

Contact the System Administrator with questions at

  • How do I create an account?

    NOTE: Only applicants with a email address are eligible for grants.
    Before you can use the online grant application you must become a registered user. During the registration process you will choose your own username and password. If you cannot remember your user name that you have created, please contact the system administrator. DO NOT create another account. If you create a duplicate account, the Grant Committee reserves the right to disqualify your application.

    Create a new account
    At the login screen click To create a new application click here. DO NOT create duplicate accounts. You will be presented with a registration screen. Enter your name and email address. Choose a unique user name and a password of at least 5 characters. We recommend using the email address as your user name. If a user name is not entered, the email address will be used as your user name. Remember that the passwords are case sensitive and fields marked with an asterisk (*) are required.

  • How do I reset my password?

    If you cannot remember your username or password, use the link to reset your account. DO NOT create multiple accounts or you may be disqualified from the grant application process.To reset your password you must know your username or email address used to create the account.

    If you still cannot access your account contact the System Administrator at

    Complete the Reset Password Page
    Enter your email address and/or your username (you must know at least one used to create account). Click the Reset Password button. An email will be sent to your account email address with a link to reset your password.

  • How do I create multiple grant requests?

    NOTE: Only applicants with a email address are eligible for grants.

    Maximum of 5 grant requests per round:
    After you have created an account and started/completed the grant application, you can create additional grant applications to be considered during the same grant round. The maximum number of grant requests per round is five. All grant applications can be created with one user account.

    Create a new grant application:
    Log into the grant application. To create another grant request click on the Add Entry icon.

    Open grant application:
    Click on the pencil to open a grant application.

    View list of grant applications:
    Click on Forms in the top grey box. This will navigate back to your list of applications. Click on the pencil next to the application you want to work on.

  • What do the icons in my application mean?

    A green check mark indicates that all of the required fields in a form have been completed and saved.

    A red exclamation point is shown when at least one required field in a form is empty or contains an invalid entry. Your document cannot be submitted while any of its forms are incomplete. If you hover your mouse over the red exclamation point, pop-up text will list the reasons that a form is considered incomplete.

    A green save diskette is shown when there is a change to a field in the form. You must click on the diskette to save the information. The green diskette may appear at the bottom of the screen or in the upper right of the page.

  • How do I know if my recommendation is complete?

    Each grant application requires a recommendation from your building principal or direct supervisor. You will not be able to submit your grant application until the recommendation has been completed.

    Once you enter their information in the Principal Recommendation and Signature page, your building principal/direct supervisor will receive an email with a link to your online grant application recommendation form. Once they complete the recommendation they will not be able to access your application again. The recommendation must be complete before you may submit your application. Monitor closely the progress of your recommendation. It is your responsibility to ensure your recommendation completes the form. The status of your recommendation will be displayed on the “Principal Recommendation and Signature” page next to their email address.

    (Notified) - Indicates the recommendation has been sent a form link by email.

    (Failed) - Indicates the recommendation email is incorrect and bounced. You must correct the email address. Once the email address has been corrected and the page saved, a new email will be sent to the updated email address.

    (Completed) - Indicates the recommendation has completed the form and submitted it as complete.

  • How do I submit my grant application?

    Before you can submit your application, you must complete all the required questions and your recommendation must be submitted as complete. The Submit button at the bottom of the navigation menu will be clickable when all the requirements have been completed. You will receive an email stating your application has been submitted.

    If the submit button is inactive, it means something in your application is incomplete. Check your application again and complete any missing information. Once all information is complete the submit button will activate.

    Your application must be submitted before the deadline to be reviewed.

  • GIPS Strategic Plan

    One essay question on the Grant Narrative page asks "Does this project address one or more of the above goals? How? Please describe how this project will provide additional opportunities to students and meets district objectives/goals." Click here for more in depth information about the GIPS Strategic Plan.

  • How do I complete the recommendation form?

    Recommendation Forms are Time-sensitive
    The applicant cannot submit their application until the recommendation form is complete and submitted. Applicants are competing for grants.

    Reminder Emails: A system generated reminder email will be sent every three days until the form is completed.

    Confidential: Your response is confidential. Applicants will not be able to see your recommendation form.

    Recommendation Form Access Link
    Once the applicant enters the recommendation name and email into the application, the system automatically generates a recommendation request email.

    Unique Links: Each recommendation request link is unique. The link will only open the recommendation form from the application it is associated with. Multiple applicants may request a recommendation from the same person. Each request will generate an email that contains a unique link.

    Save Diskette: Click on the save diskette to save changes to fields. (navigation menu and bottom of page)

    Submit as Complete: After all the fields on the recommendation form are complete, click the save diskette and the confirmation page will appear. Click on “Submit as Complete” if you are finished. The access link will be deactivated.

    Continue Editing: If you need to exit the form before it is complete, click on the save diskette to save the changes to the fields first. On the confirmation page, click on “Continue Editing” to keep the access link activated. Click the access link in the recommendation request email to access the form again.

    Reactivate Link: If you have submitted the recommendation form as complete, but still need to edit the form, contact the system administrator (


How is my Online Grant Application scored?

Grand Island Public Schools Foundation grants are awarded through a competitive process. Each grant application is reviewed by a committee and scored.

  • Score Overview

    Grand Island Public Schools Foundation grants are awarded through a competitive process. Each grant application is reviewed by a committee and scored.

    Project title and description (6 points)

    • Has the applicant clearly followed application directions?
    • Has the applicant clearly described the project?

    Meets district objectives/grant narrative (30 points)

    • Does the project provide a learning experience/opportunity that students would otherwise not receive?
    • Is the project high impact, involving a lot of students, or one that could be duplicated across the district so that it would impact a greater number of students?
    • Does the applicant explain how the project enhances current curriculum?
    • Does the applicant explain how the project meets district objectives?
    • How many disciplines are used in the project? Does the applicant describe how the project will impact the different disciplines?
    • Does the project sound like an engaging learning experience? Would you or your children react favorably to the project?

    Outcome and measures (15 points)

    • Does the applicant explain the outcomes?
    • Does the applicant have a plan to measure the outcomes?
    • Are the outcomes realistic?

    Itemized budget (15 points)

    • Has the applicant provided an itemized budget as requested?
    • Are the expenses reasonable?
    • Is there an expense that is not in line with the Foundation priority of providing additional opportunities for our students?

    Timeline (6 points)

    • Is the timeline reasonable?
    • Has the applicant planned adequate introduction and follow-up for the project?

Janeth Davis Memorial Fund

Applications and awards through the Classroom Mini-grant process

The family of Janeth Davis offers this fund to honor her memory and invest in the students of Grand Island Public Schools. Mrs. Davis was a middle school teacher, teaching both English and Spanish. She loved her students and was a fierce advocate for their education and opportunities. 

Eligibility and Purpose
The Janeth Davis Memorial Fund will offer grants annually to benefit students via the GIPS Foundation’s Classroom Mini-grant program. The grants will be funded using the standard procedures for Classroom Mini-grants as determined by the GIPS Foundation.

Preference will be given to middle school projects for these designated funds, but other projects may also be funded.

The cap for funds distributed for 2022-2023 will not exceed $1,500

To Apply
Complete the Classroom Mini-grant online application form at

Classroom Mini-grant applications are accepted in two rounds on an annual basis. See application deadlines at

Selection Committee
A committee approved by the Foundation Board will select the recipients from the requests submitted.

GIPS Foundation announces 2021-2022 Classroom Grant Awards

For the 2021-2022 school year, 12 grants totaling $13,815 were awarded through the mini-grant process. Grants range from $250 to $2,000. 3,216 students will benefit from a classroom mini-grant this school year.

Bianca Ayala, Barr Middle School, $300, “EL Classroom Transformation.” I will be transforming my classroom to a monthly theme in order to help engage middle school students in a new and different way. Providing this transformation monthly allows the students to think outside the box and learn in a new way other than in a textbook. For example, this year I have done a Biography Fashion Show and the students researched and wrote a biography on a historical person. Then they dressed up as their person and the classroom was set up as a fashion show and the students walked the red carpet then read their biography. This grant will benefit 20 students in grades K-5.

Kenny Morales and Alex Kemnitz, Career Pathways Institute, $1,500, “Grit Robotics.” Students will undertake a two-week STEM camp focused on both engineering and robotics. Students will learn how to problem-solve, think divergently, communicate, and be better leaders through the use of robotics. Students will learn both the basics and application of robotics throughout the program, and upon completion will receive personal creations to take home. This grant will benefit 41 students in grades 11-12.

Julie Jarzynka, Engleman Elementary School, $1,000, “Engleman Special Education Sensory Room.” The Engleman Special Education Team would like to create a sensory room to be used by students who receive Special Education services. This sensory room would provide a therapeutic space with a variety of equipment that provides students with special needs with personalized sensory input. This would help students stay calm and focused, so they can be better prepared for learning and interacting with others. This grant will benefit 30 students in grades K-5.

Deb Lawson, Grand Island Senior High School, $527, “Speech WSC /Personal Communication Video Equipment and Deluxe Yacker-Tracker.” Video equipment would allow the students to record speeches, performances, and presentations for both self-evaluations and peer evaluations.  In my SPEECH WSC college class, the students require video equipment that needs to be a step up from a cell phone camera because of the college requirement of incorporating advanced technology in their speeches and evaluations.  Allowing students in both my Speech WSC and Personal Communication classes to view and hear themselves aids students to specifically know what they already do well and how they need to improve.  The Deluxe Yacker-Tracker is a voice self-assessment tool and students could use the camera so both students and parents could review performances. This grant will benefit 300 students in grades 9-12.

John Jacobs, Grand Island Senior High School, $1,000, “Band Writer/Composer/Artist Clinic.” Former Army Band arranger and musician, will spend 2 days with Grand Island Senior High bands doing clinic work with the Jazz Band, Jazz Orchestra, Concert Band, Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble on April 28th and 29th, 2022. Eric is the composer/arranger of many of pieces we perform with our Jazz Orchestra. We will feature Eric as a guest artist, performing with our Jazz Band and Jazz Orchestra at Big Band Night, on Friday, April 29th. This grant will benefit 150 students in grades 9-12.

Megan Ahrens and Bill Root, Howard Elementary School, $430, “Positive Behavior Recess Rewards.” Students will receive Toe Tokens for running or walking extra laps at recess. This positive behavior reward systems will help students improve physical health as well as peer relationships and social emotional health as they walk or run with peers. Parents will receive updates on laps completed and awards given. This grant will benefit 400 students in grades K-5.

Sara White, Heather Thornton and Sheree Stockwell, Jefferson Elementary School, $2,000, “DASHing Through the Code.....With A One Eyed Robot.” Many of our elementary schools have Dash robots but Jefferson does not have any to assist teaching the Computer Science unit in Media. Students currently learn coding on computers in the computer lab, but being able to tangibly use robots would empower kids with a tool that allows their coding skills come to life when the robot follows their commands. Robots can be run through various obstacle courses designed by the Integration Specialist. This grant will benefit 315 students in grades K-5.

Liang O’Brien, Kristin Schultz, Flor Espinosa and Breanna McDonald, Lincoln Elementary School, $1,750, “Science Discovery Day.” The Edgerton Museum would bring to our school their Traveling Explorit Zone. The entire school would enjoy a full day of science activities. Each classroom would have the opportunity to explore interactive displays at the gym and a lab experiment in their classrooms. This grant will benefit 260 students in grades K-5.

Kevin Butters and Jill Buettner, Stolley Park Elementary, $2,000, “Panther Pride - Morning Announcements.” Panther pride is a video production project created, edited and produced by Stolley Park Students. A small group of expert students will record Stolley Park students as they discuss the weather, lunch, and special events to be broadcast to the entire school. In addition, students will write and create public service announcements to promote safe, responsible, and respectful behavior throughout the school. Students will get real life experiences with skills such as lighting, setting up microphones, video techniques, editing skills, script writing, and publication. This grant will benefit 250 students in grades K-5.

Julie Markvicka, Success Academy, $500, “Cultivating Success.” Outdoor raised garden beds at Success Academy. This grant will benefit 80 students in grades 9-12.

Jacqueline Proctor, Walnut Middle School, $2,000, “Walnut Middle School Art Garden.” As part of the 7th grade curriculum on careers in art, we want the students to explore a unit on Landscape Design and Public Art. They would design a plan for an art garden in the green space outside the art rooms, as well as create visual elements to include in the garden such as sculptures, painted garden posts and carved and natural seating areas. We would include pathways, shrubs and flowers so that the garden could be used by all students as an inspiring extension of the art classroom for en plein air painting and drawing. The space would also serve students in multiple ways for our Mindfulness classes and Adventures in Social & Emotional Learning classes. As an extension into the community we would have students also create the painted garden posts to be displayed along the hike and bike trails. This grant will benefit 800 students in grades 6-8.


Pamela Little and Jordan Clancy, Westridge Middle School, $808, “Pickleball System Funding.” The PE department at Westridge Middle School would like to purchase high quality Pickleball Net Systems. Pickleball is a unit we would like to add to our curriculum to increase hand-eye coordination, striking with a paddle, agility, and coordination for our students. This grant will benefit 570 students in grades 6-8.


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