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Grant Guidelines

Grant Guidelines

The Hopewell Valley Education Foundation (HVEF) provides grants that enable Hopewell Valley educators to improve their skills; to adopt innovative new projects and programs for our students; to provide enrichment opportunities; and to purchase equipment that advances teaching and learning in the Hopewell Valley public schools. The Foundation welcomes all grant proposals that enhance and advance our mission and goals.

Grant proposals are solicited from faculty and other educational staff in both the fall and spring each academic year. There is no monetary minimum or limit, however, HVEF grants are generally intended to provide funds that are beyond the means of PTO grants and reach a wide number of students. Please ensure that your proposal addresses our mission, goals, and key guidelines, as appropriate.

The HVEF welcomes creative and innovative proposals that strengthen the teaching, learning, and enrichment that happens in the public schools across the Hopewell Valley Regional School District (HVRSD).  We are proud of the excellence of HVRSD schools and look to support projects that enable teachers and administrators to explore new ways to help our schools provide an exceptional and supportive education for all students.


Deadline for Spring 2024 Grant Applications:  May 15 

     Grant Decision Notifications:  Week of June 3


Pre-Grant Inquiry Form

Not sure if you're ready to apply and want to chat about ideas?  Click here to download the Pre-Grant Inquiry Form.  Complete the form and email it to, and a representative will get back to you to discuss your pitch.  This is meant to be an informal way to vet your ideas before committing to complete the entire grant application.  It is optional and not required.


To Apply

The applicant must complete the online Grant Application form and submit it to HVEF by the grant deadline.  The applicant, appropriate administrator (building principal or departmental supervisor), and - if the proposal involves the purchase or installation of technology - the Supervisor of Educational Technology must review and sign the form prior to submission.  Typed e-signatures are acceptable on electronically submitted forms.

Funding Priorities

Well-conceptualized ideas that advance overarching HVRSD priorities, including but not limited to:

  • Inquiry-based, student-driven learning, teaching and exploration
  • Social-emotional learning and fostering resilience and emotional well-being among students
  • Promoting diversity, cultural competency, equity and inclusion across HVRSD schools
  •  Environmental sustainability initiatives
  • Creative, high-impact STEAM efforts

Recently funded examples include:

  • Enabling all HVRSD schools to purchase culturally diverse book titles for classroom libraries, book rooms and literature circles to expand students' choice of reading content.
  • Creating a relaxation and coping room within Central High School's newly renovated school health office.
  • Purchasing purposefully designed "Harkness Tables" to foster engaged discussion and idea-sharing, and providing tailored teacher training, to drive student-led, inquiry-based exploration at Central High School
  • Creating a rain garden and green roof at Toll Gate Grammar School, and supporting a rain barrel and composting project at Stony Brook Elementary School
  • Installing a wireless weather station and wind turbine building and experiment kits at Timberlane Middle School, which will enable every sixth-grade science student to collect and analyze weather data and make predictions

Innovative pilot programs, typically funded for one year and, if demonstrated to be successful, will thereafter likely be supported by the school and/or district. 

Recently funded examples include:

  • Creating a pond landscape that is a central element of Bear Tavern Elementary School's Outdoor Learning Center
  • Launching the "Project Lead-The-Way" pre-engineering curriculum at Timberlane Middle School


Equipment purchases that support stronger teaching and learning outcomes.  If the project involves the purchase or application of technology as part of the teaching/learning experience, the Supervisor of Educational Technology must review and sign the form prior to submission.

Recently funded projects include:

  •  Installing Glowforge 3D printers in each school's Learning and Design Lab to enable students to engage in engineering challenges and activities, and create prototypes of their designs
  • Purchasing tower gardens to support vertical farming at Hopewell Elementary School

Speakers or programs that deliver unique educational experiences.

Recently funded projects include:

  • Hosting renowned journalist and author Sonia Nazario at Central High School as part of the district's Global Day of Diversity, an annual event to strengthen cultural diversity and competency.
  • Enabling orchestra students in grades 5 through 12 to work closely with members of the Heimat Quartet, a professional string quartet that encourages young musicians to develop their passion for strings
  • Supporting the ongoing author-in-residence series across all HVRSD schools

HVEF generally does not fund:

  • individual professional development opportunities
  • field trips
  • projects involving or benefiting very few students
  • one-time events
  • furniture purchases, except in limited instances where the association with improved classroom teaching and learning can be clearly demonstrated and the district is not in a position to support the furniture purchase itself

The strongest grant applications will meet the following criteria:

  • The proposed program or initiative supports HVRSD priorities, including but not limited to inquiry-based learning, STEAM education, social-emotional learning, environmental sustainability, and mental health and well-being, etc.
  • The proposed program provides the opportunity for the school/district to benefit the served population beyond one school year.  Where appropriate, the proposal should detail how the project and its impact will be sustained over time.
  • The proposed project has the potential to benefit a large number of students/teachers across the district, either through its initial implementation or through a smaller-scale pilot demonstration that could be spread more widely in the future.
  • The application identifies a need in the served population through documentation and research, and the application further ties program objectives to that need and how proposed efforts serve to address it.
  • The application documents and demonstrates how engaging, creative, or new pathways to learning will be facilitated by the proposed program
  • The proposed budget is detailed in the application and is realistic considering the audience size and stated objectives.  The budget demonstrates effort at managing costs.  For higher-cost projects, the budget identifies whether the project could be funded at a lower or partial amount as a pilot.
  • Teachers throughout the school(s) and/or district actively support this project.  Where appropriate, please be specific in listing the names of teachers and staff who favor the project's implementation.  If the proposal project will be integrated into the curriculum, demonstrate that relevant teachers know about the project and actively support it.
  • The application is professional, grammatically correct, follows format requirements, cites sources where appropriate, and includes pictures/ visual aids when warranted.

Grant requirements:

By accepting a grant from the HVEF, the grant recipient agrees to certain conditions and responsibilities as outlined below:

1.     Funds distributed by the HVEF must be used solely for the purpose(s) and activities described in the grant application.  Substantive changes to the project or program, including dates, milestones, or cost, must be reported to your HVEF representative.

2.     Applicants must be teachers or staff members within the Hopewell Valley Regional School District.  Proposals submitted by parents, PTOs or other non-teachers/staff members will not be accepted.

3.     Payment of the grant is generally made directly to your school or central administration, in collaboration with the HVEF treasurer.  Please contact or to arrange for disbursal of funds.  Any unused funds must be returned to the HVEF.

4.     HVEF funds must be awarded to schools within the Hopewell Valley Regional School District - they cannot be granted to outside entities or organizations.

5.     The Hopewell Valley Education Foundation's support of the project, program, purchase or other outcome(s) resulting from this grant must be recognized and acknowledged whenever reasonably possible, including communication with parents and the public, and recognition on websites, social media accounts, T-shirts, signage or other promotional materials associated with the project.

6.     HVEF board members and/or donors who supported the project may wish to attend an event or program if it is reasonable and not disruptive to any of the participants (including the teacher or speaker).  In these cases, the grant recipient is requested to inform the HVEF representative of the date and time of the program.

7.     Key milestones or events that take place during the funded project are documented, and stories and photos of the project's impact are shared with the HVEF for broader dissemination via HVEF's print and digital communications vehicles.

8.     A Final Report describing the outcomes of the project as outlined in the grant application must be submitted to the HVEF, preferably within one month of the project or program's completion, and before the end of the school year.  The Final Report form can be downloaded from the HVEF website (  Please submit digital images or video either via email or DVD, along with a document listing the names of the people in the photos or video if known, and a brief description of what it depicts.

Please contact with any questions related to your application or grant.