School District “No Child Left Behind” funds (NCLB or ESEA Title II-A) can be used for “professional development activities that improve the knowledge of teachers … in:
- Content knowledge. Providing training in one or more of the core academic subjects that the teachers teach; and
- Classroom practices. Providing training to improve teaching practices and student academic achievement through effective instructional strategies, methods, and skills …”
A Modeling Workshop can be an excellent investment for your school because you can become a valuable resource for teaching science effectively with technology! Modeling Instruction meets the NCLB requirement of “high quality professional development that is based on scientifically-based research.” Charter school teachers and private school teachers are eligible for Title II-A funds through a local education agency (LEA). Furthermore, “Title II, Part A funds may be used to purchase materials and supplies used in professional development activities, including the materials (such as graphing calculators) that a teacher will need in order to apply the professional development in a classroom setting…” Title II funds may be used to assist teachers in meeting state certification requirements, e.g., by paying for the costs of additional required courses. It is reasonable to request up to $1000 for this purpose.
Title II-A funds are FEDERAL; despite warnings that these may go away, funding appears to exist for 2013. Next year’s funds start on July 1, and you can ask for those funds to pay for modeling workshops that start after June 30.
Your principal is the person to ask; he/she can contact your district Title II Coordinator and request them. We encourage you to download this NCLB Guide and give it to your administrator to support your request. Be courteous; if modeling workshops are NOT in your district’s yearly plan (submitted to the State Department of Education), then you can be denied those funds. If this occurs, you need to get involved in deciding how your district makes use of Title II-A funds each year. Another option is to ask your school district to offer a Modeling Instruction workshop. Give this guide ModlInstr-SchoolDistrict to your science coordinator or staff developer.
Click here to download a sample grant proposal that should help you obtain funding from your district. If you need to apply for a grant outside your school, download a list of funding sources (updated in 2010).