Insight Grants

Featured Grant Opportunity: Ohio Straight A Fund Round 2

The Ohio Department of Education has released application documents for Round 2 of the Straight A Fund Grant Program. The Straight A Fund provides funding to educational entities in Ohio with the drive and courage to try new approaches that:

  • Meet the learning needs of its students,
  • Reduce the cost of running a school or school district, or
  • Drive more dollars to the classroom.

We’re including some basic information on the grant below. For further details be sure to visit the Straight A Fund Program Website.

Program Overview: This is an exciting and unique opportunity because funds can go for virtually any school project that is sustainable and will increase achievement or the amount of resources devoted to the classroom! In the first round of funding, 24 grants representing over 150 school districts and partnering organizations were awarded $88.6 million dollars. Grants funded in the first round of awards included the following initiatives: plans to increase student access to high-tech manufacturing skills, expansion of post-secondary class offerings in Appalachia, expansion of the use of digital technology in classrooms, STEM-focused projects, and support for physical activity and nutrition programs, among others.

Award: Individual applicants can request up to $5 Million, and consortium applicants can request up to $15 Million.

A total of $250 Million was allocated to the Straight A Fund. About $11 Million was earmarked for a specific initiative. In the first round of the grants, $88.6 Million was awarded.  Therefore, approximately $150 Million remains available for Round 2 awards. Awards are for Fiscal Year 15.

Who Can Apply: Schools in Ohio

When is the Deadline? The intent to apply period is open through March 7th, 2014. (The intent to apply is neither required nor binding.) Applications for the grant will be accepted from March 20th through April 3rd at 4 PM.

Tips for Proposals: Proposals that are creative and cost effective will have a higher chance at getting funding. The Straight A Fund states that they “are on the lookout for proposals that solve specific problems in our schools, can be quickly duplicated by others and are sustainable.”

The contacts stress that being clear in your application explanations is critical.

The impact of your project will be scored. Think about changes you can make that will make a large impact either because you will affect a lot of students (there were many multi-district winning projects in Round 1) or because you will make a huge change or both.

Something Cool or Unique About This Opportunity: Projects proposed for Straight A funding MUST be sustainable. In addition to providing thorough, detailed narrative explanations about sustainability, applicants must also complete a five-year Financial Impact Table that demonstrates the project can be sustained for at least five years beyond the grant period. Additionally, sustainability is not only scored, but there is an entire scoring round specific to rating sustainability. While you may propose a project that is expected to yield income, and you may discuss that income in your narrative, you may not count income as part of your sustainability plan due to the wording of the funding legislation. The project must be sustainable even without the anticipated income.

More Information/How to Apply: Access the Straight A Fund application here. Webinars aimed at helping potential applicants understand the rules and requirements of the program and application were scheduled for 2/11, 2/18, and 2/25/2014. If you weren’t able to attend a webinar that has already occurred, check out the links to the recorded events at the program’s site.

We’ll continue to add more featured grant opportunities to the Insight Blog. If you would like more information on Insight’s grant writing, editing, or research services, please contact us by phone at 716-474-0981, email, or fill out our online contact form.


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  1. […] has made some changes to the Straight A Fund Round 2, a grant that we previously covered as a featured grant opportunity. The application due date has been pushed from April 3rd to April 18th. The following message from […]

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