Education Fund Board Grant Commission accepting Innovation Grant applications |

Education Fund Board Grant Commission accepting Innovation Grant applications

— The Education Fund Board’s Grant Commission is accepting applications for its annual Innovation Grant, with plans to award $25,000 to local school district employees or nonprofits.

The Innovation Grant is the smallest of three grants given annually by the EFB and its Grant Commission and focuses on applications that encourage innovation and critical thinking by teachers and students.

Funds for the Education Fund Board are generated through a half-cent sales tax in Steamboat Springs and dispersed via school district, community group and innovation grants each year. Last year, the board operated on a $3.8 million budget.

The amount allocated for Innovation Grants has decreased this year from $50,000 allocated in previous years, both because of large district grants awarded by the board last spring and because of the small amount typically requested for the grants.

Grant requests are accepted from staff, teachers or groups within each Routt County school district and are open to outside-of-district recipients if they have the support or sponsorship of someone within the district.

Previous grants have funded a structural engineering class, a mobile science lab, robotics materials and inflatable stability ball seating in two classrooms.

EFB President Sam Jones said the board and Grant Commission are particularly interested in applications for STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) initiatives.

“We’re definitely entertaining STEM projects and giving them some priority if there are any,” Jones said.

Following the Nov. 20 application deadline, the grant commission will ask questions of the grant writers, who will then respond, with all of the correspondence posted on the EFB website.

Grant writers will then be invited to a meeting Nov. 9 to present any additional information on their grants before grants are awarded Dec. 16.

Community group grant applications will be due Jan. 6, followed by school district grant applications Feb. 1.

More information about any of the grant programs and a schedule of meetings can be found on the EFB website,

To reach Teresa Ristow, call 970-871-4206, email or follow her on Twitter @TeresaRistow

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