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Inspired Learning Grants Program Overview

The purpose of the Inspired Learning Grants program from The Learning Network of Greater Kalamazoo and the Kalamazoo Community Foundation is to support innovative learning ideas from Kalamazoo County educators. In 2015, four grants will be awarded to support innovative educational opportunities conceived and implemented by the educators.
  • First Place: $8,000
  • Second Place: $6,000
  • Third Place: $4,000
  • Fourth Place: $2,000

Who can apply:

Grants are available to any educator, volunteer, support staff or paraprofessional working with kids 0-18 in a professional setting, including a school, a non-profit or a private organization in Kalamazoo County.

How educators apply:

Applicants submit a video on Facebook. Videos must be 30-240 seconds in length and explain :
  • The applicant's Inspired Learning program idea and how a grant would help bring it to life.
  • Why this program is exciting to the applicant personally.
  • What impact the idea would have on young people and the community, and why it inspired learning.
  • What success looks like - what is the educational outcome for those involved.
This is not about fancy video quality or editing. It's about the passion of the applicant and the creativity of the presentation. Videos can simply be shot on smart phones.

About the judging:

Judging will take place in two phases:
  • STEP 1: Public voting on Facebook will determine the top 12 videos for final judging. Between October 5 and October 16, the community will vote for their favorite videos. The 12 videos that receive the most "Likes" will advance to the panel judging phase.
  • STEP 2: Between October 19 and October 23, the judging panel will determine the 4 winners. Videos will be judged on criteria including quality of the project idea, passion of the applicant, clarity of the presentation, likelihood of success based on the definition of success provided within the proposal, and level of engagement of the young people to be served.

Key Dates:

  • Video Submission: August 19 to September 18
  • Community Voting: October 5 to October 16
  • Final Judging by Leadership Panel: October 19 to October 23
Recipients will be announced in November.