Application Guidelines

Part Two: Proposal & Budget

Part Two: Proposal

Consists of five sections and should articulate creative, thoughtful activities or projects that demonstrate potential for learning for the teacher, the student, and the school community.

  • Create and save your proposal using a word processor, avoiding any formatting.
  • 25,000 characters, including spaces, (approx. six and half, single spaced, typed pages) cumulative for all five sections.
  • Avoid identifying references: Please refrain from using your name, your school or district names within your proposal to ensure an anonymous selection process.
  • Avoid using hyperlinks and web addresses.
  • Refer to the Scoring Criteria when addressing each of the five proposal sections.
  • TEAMS:
    • Proposals should reflect collaboration and demonstrate your ability to work successfully as a team. Team members should be active participants in the writing process. They should also understand that they are financially responsible for their portion of the grant if awarded.
    • Only the team lead is responsible for entering the proposal.


A response to each application question is required. However, applicants should not feel limited by these questions and should provide selection committee readers with any information they feel is helpful in articulating their fellowship goals. Additionally, we strongly encourage you to review the Scoring Criteria (found under Quick Links) to understand what criteria selection committee members are looking for in a highly scored proposal.

  • Fellowship Purpose and Overarching Goals: In this section, you will tell us about yourself, your students, and the overarching goals of your fellowship. Your fellowship goals should have clear connections to what you choose to write about your students and yourself.
    • What are your strengths and aspirations as a teacher? What are your current areas of growth or gaps in your practice?
    • Describe what you know about your students including, but not limited to: their collective learning needs, culture(s), interests, and academic performance.
    • What is the purpose of your fellowship? Identify any significant problem(s) you hope to solve as a result of your fellowship, as well as any overarching goals.
  • Fellowship Plan: In this section, you will outline the key activities of your fellowship. Be sure to include rationale detailing what you will be doing during this activity, and also, how this activity is connected to your overarching goals, and the needs of yourself and/or your students.
    • What are the key activities of your summer learning plan?
    • How do your key activities align to your students’ needs and/or your needs?
    • How do your key activities help you become successful in achieving your fellowship goals?
  • Teacher Growth and Learning: In this section, you will reflect on the different ways this fellowship will allow you to be challenged, learn, and develop.
    • In what ways is this fellowship both personally and intellectually challenging for you?
    • As a teacher, what is the importance of learning about your students’ cultures? In what way does your fellowship allow for opportunity for you to learn about different cultures/communities?
    • How will reflection and critical thinking play a role in your fellowship?
    • How will you ensure you are able to maximize your learning, despite challenges?
  • The Student and Stakeholder Experience: This section is connected to the implementation of your new knowledge and skills gained from your summer fellowship, and the ways students and other stakeholders will potentially be impacted.
    • As a direct result of your summer learning, what tangible changes will happen in your instructional practice and/or school? How are these changes aligned to the overarching goals/purpose that you have outlined (e.g. new units, practices, routines, methods, classroom activities, school initiatives, and/or other student-centered experiences)?
    • As a direct result of these changes, how will you center what students bring to the classroom in their learning? How will your students’ school experiences become more authentic, cognitively challenging, and/or allow for critical thinking?
    • To what extent will you build partnerships with stakeholders outside the classroom? How will you enable students to do the same? (Stakeholders include, but are not limited to colleagues, parents, families, and community members.)
    • To what extent are these changes realistic? How do your current school’s conditions allow you to make the changes you have outlined?
  • Budget Narrative: Provide a brief narrative showing evidence of thoughtful planning and research supporting your specific Fellowship Plan.
    • The narrative should explain your rationale for the project's expenses.
    • Stipulate a time frame and approximate costs as closely as possible. 
    • Team budgets should include both costs broken down by individual and totals for the whole team.
    • NOTE: We strongly advise you against under budgeting. The cost of your fellowship is not a consideration in the selection process. Fund for Teachers is unable to increase your budget after you are selected. Applicants should also be aware that you will receive 90% of your grant award in the spring, and the remaining 10% of your award after the completion of your post-fellowship reports in the fall. Please consider this timing when applying.

Refer to Part Three: Itemized Budget Sheet for more detail regarding allowable expenses. 

Applicant Eligibility

Do you meet each of the following eligibility requirements?

  • A full-time preK-12th grade teacher, curriculum specialist, curriculum head, Special Education coordinator, media specialist/librarian, or other type of educator who spends at least 50% of your time directly teaching students;
  • Returning to the classroom in the consecutive school year;
  • Will have at least three years’ experience as a preK-12th grade teacher at the end of the school year; and
  • Have not received a Fund for Teachers grant award in the past five years.
  • I understand that FFT grant proposals must be written by the applicant(s) and not my school administration or any other third party.

Not Eligibile

Thank you for your interest in Fund for Teachers. Based on the information provided, you do not meet our eligibility requirements. Each applicant, including members of a team, must meet each eligibility requirement. If you have questions regarding specific eligibility questions, please contact FFT at or 1-800-681-2667.

Project Eligibility

Does your proposed Fund for Teachers grant proposal include any of the following?

  • Student travel
  • The completion of baccalaureate or post baccalaureate degrees, including:
    • Courses for graduate credit
    • University College or Credit Hours*
  • Onsite (or campus) professional development at your school or by the district
  • Compensation for substitutes
  • Stipend
  • No learning experience: All monies will go toward classroom supplies, such as books, technology, or other materials.

* University courses, such as teacher professional development trips/programs are an allowable fellowship type. However, if the choice is given to pay for credit hours toward a degree that portion of the cost will be at the expense of the Fellow. If the credit hours are included, and non-negotiable they are permitted, so long as the applicant is not using these hours to complete a baccalaureate degree.

Not Eligibile

Thank you for your interest in Fund for Teachers. Based on the information provided, your project may not meet our eligibility requirements. Fund for Teachers fellowships cannot include funding for the following: Student travel, stipends, baccalaureate course work, substitutes, onsite or campus professional development and materials-only based grants.

If you feel this is in error or have questions regarding specific eligibility questions, please contact FFT at or 1-800-681-2667.