Educator Professional Learning Grants

The Durham Public Schools Foundation (DPSF) believes that our students, educators and families are best positioned to identify opportunities for creating transformational change in our schools and that by investing in them we will find solutions faster.

The DPSF pilot grants will develop and fund innovative ideas from Durham’s students, educators and school communities.  

What funds can be used for

This grant is provided for DPS educators to access professional learning that will help them improve their practice. The funds could be used for things such as training costs, substitute teacher costs to cover time gone, materials like books for a new PLC, and costs for materials and food to support a whole school training.

Eligible applicants

This grant is available for all Durham Public Schools' educators (teachers, TAs, interventionists, counselors, principals, etc). As DPSF's mission is to support students, educators and families in Durham Public Schools, grants will only be available to support projects and initiatives that benefit those in DPS (no funds will be available for charter, private or home schools).

An application can be from a single educator or a group of educators. Preference will be given to applications from a group of educators at the same school that shows the promise of creating systemic change in a school. Educator teams can, but are not required to, include the school principal. Applicants must get support from their principal for their proposal.

Available Grant amounts

Grant requests can be for $250- $1,000 per educator or up to $10,000 for a whole school (e.g. a team of 5 educators could apply for up to $5,000 dollars; a whole school training could not exceed $10,000).

Time frame

The activity/project/experience that the grant funds will be used for should begin between February - June 2019. The grant funds can be used over an 18 month period.

How grants are selected

DPSF funds proposals that are transformative, equitable, sustainable and feasible. Click here to review the scoring rubric used to evaluate how well grant applications meet DPSF’s priorities for funding.

The DPSF Investing in Our People committee reviews and scores grant applications and makes recommendations to the DPSF Board of Directors for grants to fund up to the available amount. The Investing in Our People committee is comprised of educators, parents and community members.

Grant application

To submit your application complete this Google form by Friday, January 4th at 8pm.

You will need to complete all information in the form and submit it at one time. You are not able to begin the Google form, save information and complete it at a later time. Here are the questions you will need to complete in the application (we recommend you copy these into a document to prepare your responses and put them into the Google form when you have everything ready to submit):

Educator Professional Learning Grant application questions:

  • Proposal Name (provide a short name, no longer than 10 words, that serves as a title for your application) 

  • Name & email address of Project Lead (one person who will serve as primary contact)

  • First and last name of additional applicant(s) 

  • Email address and/or phone number of applicant(s) 

  • DPS school(s) where applicant works 

  • Roles of applicant(s) (e.g., Special Education Teacher - PreK-5, Counselor - Grades 9 - 12)

  • What is the professional learning experience you want to do?

  • How will the practice of educators and/or the school as a whole change as a result of the experience? (describe in 500 words or less)

  • How will your students' experiences and outcomes change as a result of this professional learning? (describe in 500 words or less)

  • How many people total will be directly involved with the experience (e.g., attending a training, engaged in developing or implementing the work)?

  • Approximately how many people do you think will be impacted by the project?

  • What is the approximate date when you would begin or engage in this learning experience?

  • What is the anticipated length of project or experience? (options: 1 day, 1 week, 1 month, 2-4 months, 5-7 months, 8+ months, other)

  • How much are you requesting and what will you use the funds for? (Grant requests can be for $250- $1,000 per educator or up to $10,000 for a whole school)

  • Will you be able to access this professional learning if you receive some but not all of the funds you requested? How would you adapt if you received less funding than you requested?

  • Will you use additional funds to supplement these grant funds in order to pursue this project? If so, about how much additional funding will you need and where will those funds come from?

  • Have you gotten support from your principal for this proposal? (applicants who are selected for funding will be asked to provide a letter of support from their principal) (options: yes, no)

  • Is there anything else you would like for us to know about your application?


Apply today

Click here to apply


Applications Due by Friday, January 4th at 8pm

Grant recipients will be notified by mid-February


Email us at with any questions about grant applications