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Neighborhood School Grants

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Vibrant and successful schools are a fundamental part of any thriving community.

Two Trees and the Walentas Family Foundation are committed to the cause of public education in New York City. The Neighborhood School Grants program was founded on the belief that vibrant and successful schools are a fundamental part of any thriving community - and that the community in turn plays a critical role in the success or failure of our schools.

Since founding the Neighborhood School Grants Program in 2013, Two Trees and the Walentas Family Foundation have distributed more than $1,650,000 to support innovative programs in Districts 13, 14, and 15 in Brooklyn.

Learn more about grant recipients here.

Funding Priorities

Two Trees and the Walentas Family Foundation believe that individual schools themselves know best how to assess their needs and how to address them given their unique capabilities and resources. Through the Neighborhood School Grants program, we seek to support those projects that do the most to enrich students' learning experiences and help a school to achieve its central mission, but which are not supported by a school's existing budget allocation.

We believe this can best be achieved through initiatives that draw on the creativity, vision, and energy of the entire school community—from students and their families, to faculty and staff, and even beyond to the neighborhood at large.

There is no restriction on the type of projects we will consider. However, we generally do not fund turn-key enrichment residencies or basic equipment purchases.

You can learn more about previously funded programs by exploring our past grant recipients here.

Past Grant Categories

  • Career and Vocational Training
  • Classroom Instruction Support
  • Curriculum Development
  • Enrichment, Clubs, and Afterschool Programs
  • Experiential Education, Field-Trips, Project-based Learning
  • Mentoring, Guidance, Advocacy
  • Professional Development
  • Race and Gender Equity
  • Restorative Justice
  • Transition to High School/ Transition to College
  • Tutoring and Remediation

Apply

Public schools located in Districts 13, 14, and 15 are eligible to apply.

Schools are encouraged to send short proposals in advance of applying to discuss eligibility, scope, and program details. In order to provide feedback ahead of the application deadline, proposals are due by April 30, 2019. The application period for the 2019-2020 school year opens May 1, 2019, with and application deadline of May 31, 2019, 11:59PM EST.

Have questions? We'd love to hear from you. Have an idea? Share a short proposal with us. Ready to apply? Apply now.

FAQ

Eligibility

Who is eligible?

All public schools located in Districts 13, 14, and 15 are eligible to apply for a Neighborhood School Grant.

Nonprofits, CBOs, and other Education Vendors are not eligible to apply.

PTAs are not eligible to apply except in partnership with their school’s leadership.

Does my school need a fiscal sponsor?

Your school does not need a fiscal sponsor. Two Trees and the Walentas Family Foundation partner with The Fund for Public Schools to distribute funding directly into a school’s budget when they are awarded a grant.

However, if your school has a partner 501(c)3 nonprofit, like a PTA or other fundraising organization, they can receive the grant on a school’s behalf.

Are schools eligible for repeat funding?

Schools are eligible to receive Neighborhood School Grants for up to three consecutive years. Schools may apply for additional funding for a previously funded program or for a new program altogether. After three years of funding, schools must wait one year before applying again.

Application Logistics

My school hasn’t applied to the Neighborhood School Grants program before. Can you give me some advice?

Call us at 7182222500 or email us at [email protected]. We are happy to counsel you through the entire process.

Can you provide feedback before we submit our application?

We encourage schools to reach out with a proposal before sending a final grant application. A proposal includes basic information about your school, a short program summary, and a short description of the team that would oversee its execution.

Proposals should be sent before April 30, 2019 to ensure time for feedback before the final application deadline. You can find the proposal form here.

How does a school apply?

Applications must submit an application with support materials using Submittable.

We recommend that schools send a proposal before completing an application. You can find the proposal form here.

Who should fill out the application?

The application should be filled out by someone employed by the school who has been designated by school leadership. The main contact on the application should be familiar with the details of the proposed program and how it supports the school mission.

What will we need to include in our application?

Applicants must supply: contact information; a narrative that clearly explains the proposed project, a project timeline, and descriptions of the goals of the program; and the needs that your school seeks to address with its implementation. Applicants must also supply a line-item budget and budget narrative.

When is the application deadline?

Applications are due by May 31, 2019, 11:59PM EST. Late applications will not be reviewed.

Application Content & Funding Priorities

What kind of projects do you fund?

There is no restriction on the type of projects we will consider. We believe that individual schools themselves know best how to assess their needs and how to address them given their unique capabilities and resources.

However, we generally do not fund turn-key enrichment residencies or basic equipment purchases.

What can grant funds be used for?

There is no restriction on the type of project expenditures that grants may support. The grant application requires a line-item budget detailing what funds are requested for and a budget narrative describing how funds will be used. All grant funds must be used according to approved project budgets, and all expenditures must be thoroughly documented.

What are the selection criteria?

We prioritize applications based on:

  • Expected impact on student experience and achievement
  • Degree to which project supports school mission and enriches school community
  • Capacity of applicant to implement project activities and achieve project goals and
  • Inclusion of a broad range of participants and stakeholders in all project phases.
What do you look for in a successful application?

A successful application clearly articulates:

  • Program goals and how they relate to priorities set by the school leadership team
  • Strategies and activities that will be used to reach program goals
  • New or existing structures and tools that will facilitate implementation of strategies and activities
  • Objectives, information, or feedback that will be used to track program progress
  • Key personnel and how they are equipped to execute the program and
  • Which students will participate in the program and how they will be designated and recruited.
Can you provide feedback before we submit our application?

We are happy to talk through a proposal before you submit an application. This proposal includes basic information about your school, a short program summary, and a short description of the team that would oversee its execution.

Proposals should be sent before April 30, 2019 to ensure time for feedback before the final application deadline. You can find the proposal form here.

Funding & Grant Timeline

When will grants be awarded?

Grants will be awarded in July 2019, and funding will be distributed in October 2019.

What is the grant amount?

Grants can be requested for any amount up to $25,000.

Do you award partial funding?

We may decide to award partial funding. We do try our best to ensure that the amount awarded will still allow you sufficient resources to create a high-quality program.

What is the grant period?

Grants are awarded on an annual cycle. Grants awarded in July are intended to support projects taking place during the following school year. Grant expenditures must be complete by the end of the school year.

What are the reporting requirements?

Grantees will be required to submit a progress report at the end of fall semester and a final report at the end of the spring semester. Reports will detail project activities, assess successes and shortfalls in meeting project goals, and provide financial records documenting grant expenditures.

Grant Recipients

Since founding the Neighborhood School Grants Program in 2013, Two Trees and the Walentas Family Foundation have distributed more than $1,650,000 to support innovative programs in Districts 13, 14, and 15 in Brooklyn.

Learn about our grant recipients here

Contact Us

Questions about the Neighborhood School Grants program?

Drop us a line at 718-222-2500 or email us at [email protected]

Please note, Two Trees and the Walentas Family Foundation do not accept unsolicted requests for funding or support.

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