Innovative Grants Program
IPSF promotes and recognizes innovative teaching and counseling projects within IUSD through the Innovative Grants Program. These grants help to fund innovative approaches, which bring deeper meaning to curriculum and improve the educational experiences of students. Grants are funded through a combination of support from corporate partners and parent support through the Parents Appreciating Teachers and Staff program.
Since 1996, IPSF has awarded over $1.5 million to teachers and counselors, benefitting over 100,000 students since the program’s inception! Funding ranges from $100 to $20,000 for projects that support instruction in schools across the district.
Applicants may apply for funding from three different categories to support innovation in the classrooms and school-wide counseling initiatives.2020 Winners
Applicants may apply for funding from three different categories. Teaching Grants support innovation in the classroom, while the Counseling Grants provides funding for innovative school-wide counseling initiatives. Mega Grants offers educators a higher amount of funding to implement larger projects. Individual schools may apply for all three grant opportunities in one school year. Beginning in the 2019-2020 school year, students in IUSD will now have the opportunity to apply for funding for projects and initiatives that benefit their schools, student bodies, or communities.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can my school apply to all three grant opportunities?
Absolutely! The review process for each grant type is conducted independently. Your school is welcome to submit as many grant requests as you desire, but per school funding limits apply. Schools are limited to one Mega Grant award per school year.
What are the funding limits? What are the funding priorities for each grant?
The funding limits per school are the following (Please note that this does not guarantee that a school will receive the maximum funding amount):
|Grant Type||Funding Range||Funding Priorities|
|Mega Grants||$5,000 – $20,000||
Arts, Mental Health & Counseling, Music, Science & Engineering, Technology, and other educational areas
|$1 – $5,000
$1 – $5,000
|Student Grants||$1 – $1,000||Mental Health & Well-Being, Service Learning, Promoting Positive School Culture, and Student Awareness|
Is there a minimum request for funding?
Not at all. We encourage applicants to submit their proposals no matter how big or small their project.
Am I allowed to use funds to pay for teacher time?
Only funding from Mega Grants may be used to compensate for time put towards the proposed project (i.e. training). Funds may not solely be applied to teacher compensation.
I previously received a grant award but would like to apply for additional funding to continue my project. Can I do that?
Yes! However, in order to encourage new projects, we fund projects for a maximum of three years.
My project costs exceed the funding limits. Should I still apply?
While the grants do have funding limits, we encourage applicants to still apply. Please be sure to explain how you will secure the rest of your project funding in your proposal.
Who is on the review committee?
The review committee is comprised of individuals from the community, IUSD, and IPSF.
How is the review conducted?
Members of the committee review applications through a blind read and score each application based on an established set of criteria. Once scores are compiled and averaged, the committee will meet to determine awards.
When will I be notified whether I received an award or not?
Applicants will be notified mid-February 2020.
How will I be able to access my funds?
Funds will be available via your school’s gift account after the awards reception.
Are schools outside of Irvine Unified School District (IUSD) eligible for funding?
Only schools within IUSD are eligible for funding.
When and where is the awards reception?
The awards reception will be held on Monday, February 24, 2020 from 4:30 p.m.-5:30 p.m. at TAPS Fish House & Brewery.