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10 Educator Grants for Reading & Literacy

10 Educator Grants for Reading & Literacy

The cost of books and funding literacy programs can add up. But, that should never prohibit students from learning something new or getting lost in a good book. So, what’s the best solution when district and school budgets are tight? Try applying for a grant!

Grants can be publicly or privately funded, and they offer money to be used for usually specific purposes that does NOT need to be repaid. Luckily, there is no shortage of grants available for educators. Here, we’ve compiled a wide-ranging list of some of the best grants out there for educators organized by intended purpose.*

Grants for Literacy Initiatives

Mazda Foundation
Applications accepted between May 1 – July 1 annually

The Mazda Foundation awards grants to promote a variety of programs including education and literacy. Committed to giving back to the communities where Mazda and its employees live and work to build a better, brighter future, the Mazda Foundation has made contributions exceeding $5 million since its founding in 1992.

Believe in Reading
Applications now accepted, no specific deadlines in place

Believe in Reading targets successful literacy programs which serve populations that show out of the ordinary needs, such as geographic areas with low reading scores and high poverty levels. Grants between $1,000 and $10,000 may be awarded and are renewable for up to three years.

Ezra Jack Keats Mini-Grants
Annual application due March 31

Created by the children’s book author and illustrator, Ezra Jack Keats (EJK) Mini-Grants award up to 70 $500 grants annually to public schools, public libraries, and public preschool programs. Grants are intended to innovative projects that foster creative expression, cooperation, and community.

The Lois Lenski Covey Foundation
Applications accepted between February 15 – October 30

The Lois Lenski Covey Foundation awards grants to organizations that operate a lending bookmobile that travels into neighborhoods populated by underserved youth. Grants range from $500 to $3000 and are specifically for book purchases

Amber Brown Grant
Applications accepted from November 1 – April 15

In commemoration of the author and beloved school speaker, Paula Danziger, the Amber Brown Grant awards one school each year with an author or illustrator visit and $250 worth of new books to continue Paula’s love of connecting children with creative influences.

Witter Bynner Foundation for Poetry
Applications accepted from August 1 – December 31 annually

The Witter Bynner Foundation for Poetry perpetuates the art of poetry in American culture and allows organizations to apply from $1,000 to $10,000 awards to be used for expanding awareness of the positive effects of poetry on society.

National Book Fund
Applications accepted between February 1, 2020 – March 15, 2020

The National Book Fund makes grants to adult literacy and adult basic education programs. The NBF supports the following initiatives: basic literacy, adult education, English language instruction, GED/HSE preparation, and family literacy. Grants have ranged from $500 to $2,000.

Grants for School Libraries

The Sara Jaffarian School Library Program Award
Application due May 4, 2020

The $5,000 award is presented annually for exemplary humanities programming in libraries that serve children in grades K-8.

Doris Ann Noris, We Love Libraries Monthly Lottery
Complete the one-time entry form, a winner is chosen the first business day of each month

As a part of the Sisters in Crime mission to promote the ongoing advancement, recognition, and professional development of women crime writers, every month the We Love Libraries award $1000 to a library to use for the purchase of books.

Grants for Literacy Leaders

Corwin Literacy Leader Award, presented by ILA
Application due March 15, 2020

This award is presented to a district or school administrative literacy leader who has recognized the importance of building a culture of literacy within a school or district by offering literacy professional development, instructional resource support, and/or developing specific literacy programs to build capacity and increase student literacy achievement. (Candidates must be an ILA member).

Need some additional resources to aid you in the grant application process? We’ve compiled a few of our best resources to get you started!

*Many of these grants are awarded annually. Grant awards and due dates are as accurate as possible as of February 2020 but are subject to change. Always check specific grant websites for the most up-to-date and accurate application information.

Don't forget to join us for our upcoming webinar Supercharge Your Daily 5 with Online Literacy Programs on March 25th at 11:00 AM CST! Register here!

madison.michell's picture

Madison Michell has been a member of the Edmentum team since 2014 and currently serves as a Marketing Manager. As a former Kindergarten and 3rd grade teacher during her time as a Teach For America corps member, she believes education truly has the power to transform lives. She is passionate about connecting educators with online programs, best practices, and research that improve teaching and learning for today's students.