Steamboat Education Fund Board set to give final OK to grant requests |

Steamboat Education Fund Board set to give final OK to grant requests

Scott Franz

— Routt County’s three school districts Wednesday night will learn which of their grant requests will earn the final OK from the Steamboat Springs Education Fund Board.

The board’s extensive grant-vetting process will conclude when it weighs second readings of $2.45 million worth of grant requests from the districts.

The second readings of the grants come after the board’s grant-vetting committee spent months trimming by about $300,000 an initial list of requests worth $2.75 million.

All three school district’s saw their original requests reduced in some capacity because the board projects it will be able to allocate a maximum of $2.5 million in grants for next school year.

The Steamboat Springs School District has $2.12 million worth of grant requests that will be weighed by the Fund Board.

If all of the district’s grants are approved, the funds would be used to support 15 staff positions, provide professional development for teachers, improve broadband network infrastructure, pay for the salaries of literacy coaches and provide new technology hardware, among other things.

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Steamboat’s share of the grant requests also includes $32,500 to support the North Routt Charter School’s expeditionary learning curriculum.

In Hayden, the grants up for consideration largely would support technology in the school district.

The district’s requests that still are in contention total $121,619 and would be used to purchase new tablet computers for its students and also support the intervention programs at the middle school.

And in South Routt, a grant request that now totals $132,000 would be used to improve broadband network infrastructure in the district and purchase new software and hardware.

This grant-vetting cycle for the Fund Board has been marked by a few unprecedented changes and some tension between the body and the Steamboat School District.

Last month, the Fund Board resolved some of that tension when it voted for the first time to set a minimum level of funding for Steamboat, which has seen its share of the tax revenue decline in recent years while the smaller districts have seen their shares rise.

Before that, the Fund Board met with the Steamboat Springs School Board for the first time in years to discuss the worth of small class sizes as well as concern from some Fund Board members about the district’s grant request to fund 22 teaching positions.

Other changes put in place this year under the leadership of Fund Board President Kristi Brown also aimed to make the grant-vetting process more efficient.

To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210 or email

Fund Board grant requests

Steamboat Springs: $2.12 million

Hayden: $121,619

South Routt: $132,000

Collaborative: $80,000 for grant writer

Total: $2.45 million

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