Finding the right grants for physical education can help take your PE department to the next level. Physical education grants can fund new curriculum, technology, professional development, and equipment. Here are tips, strategies, and a free grant template to get you started to get moving on your PE grants.
The Need For Physical Education Grants
Physical education is a subject worth investing in! The importance of physical education is well documented. The wide range of physical, mental, social, and emotional benefits of physical education are endless.
And while physical education has been proven to be a valuable subject for all students, funding is often scarce. Tight school budgets and an emphasis on “core subjects” like math and science often leave physical education as an afterthought. Unfortunately, this leads many physical education departments to operate on a very lean budget. As a result, physical education departments are forced to use their limited funds to replace old and battered equipment and nothing else.
But there is so much more that physical education classes need to be successful. Like any other subject, physical education would benefit from cutting-edge curriculum, technology, and various equipment to enhance the educational experience. While more physical education departments are tapping into district and school-level curriculum and technology budgets, these may not always be available.
Physical education grants can be a fantastic alternative source of money to help fully fund new initiatives. By utilizing physical education grants, schools and departments can take a crucial step in putting physical education classes on the same level as any other subject in the school.
Explore What Is Available With Grant Finders
Physical education teachers often assume that there are no grants for physical education. But, while they might not make headlines, grants for physical education exist! With the help of online grant finders, teachers are pleasantly surprised to see the opportunities for physical education grants.
At the local, state, and national levels, a wide variety of grants can be used for physical education. However, it is important to note that just because the grant doesn’t explicitly say “physical education” doesn’t mean PE isn’t eligible.
Most grants have larger defining characteristics that physical education can easily address. Other places to consider applying for grants can include:
- School health grants
- Health & wellness grants
- Social-emotional learning grants
- Physical fitness grants
- Physical activity grants
- Grants for PE equipment
- Curriculum grants
- Technology grants
- Community partnership grants
- Drug education grants
If you don’t personally know where to start, the Spark Grant Finder is a great resource. “The SPARK Grant Finder Tool helps you locate funding for your Physical Education, After School, Early Childhood, Classroom Activity, or Coordinated School Health program. Grants can be used for curriculum, teacher training, or equipment.”
Past the Spark Grant Finder, there are other great ways to find local grants that a PTO or community organization might sponsor. If you are not sure where to start looking, it can help define what your physical education grant is for.
Planning Your PE Grant
Grants for physical education don’t have to be complicated! When planning your PE grant, it is important to have a clear mission. While the funds might go towards specific things, it is likely part of your larger plan.
For example, you might have the mission to transition to a more fitness-focused physical education program. Next, you can break down your needs into four main categories,
- Training/Professional Development
Within these four categories, you can start identifying if money and grant funding can be targeted to bring the grant and its mission to life. You might have a few pieces already in place, which is excellent, but consider the different elements going into your PE grant writing process.
1) Curriculum – Do you have a curriculum plan in place for your fitness-focused initiative? Grant funding can help to invest in a diverse range of curriculum that will better promote fitness via yoga, dance, weightlifting, and more.
2) Technology – Do you and your students have access to the appropriate technology during PE class time? For example, maybe students can access phones, but an added smartboard or Ipads can allow for a more integrated technology experience.
3) Equipment – Do you have the equipment to support your fitness-focused initiative? For example, you may have a great fitness center, but lack lighter weights and training bars for newer students.
4) Training/Professional Development – Are you and your fellow teachers ready to take on this initiative? For example, it might be training on teaching a type of fitness subject or how to utilize technology in the classroom better. What training or professional development will help set up for long-term success?
Writing Grants For Physical Education
After finding a grant and having a clear mission, it is time to write your PE grant. While each grant will have different elements and requirements, there are certainly some key components to consider putting into your grants for physical education. Most successful grant applications contain the following parts:
- Cover Letter
- Project Abstract (Mission)
- Statement of Need
- Program Description
- Goals & Objects
- Staff and Organization Information
While the list above may seem like a lot to cover, grants for physical education (or really any grant) do not need to be a novel. Most grant applications ask you to be concise. Remember that the people reviewing your grant likely have other applications and duties and don’t have time or interest in reading pages upon pages of information. There are lots of other helpful grant tips out there to make your grant writing process successful.
Physical Fitness Grants & Physical Education Grants Template
Not sure where to start with your grant writing process? Let us help! PLT4M has created a sample grant template that can help you in your physical education grant writing journey. This sample template gives all the information you need to make a case for your grant.
Key Takeaways On Grants For Physical Education
PE grants for schools can open up new opportunities to innovate physical education. Better yet, there are lots of grants for physical education that come out on a rolling basis. So don’t give up if you don’t get the grant funding the first time! Or more importantly, even if you have successfully obtained a grant in the past, don’t be afraid to go out and find more.
The biggest takeaway from this whole grant process is that there is money out there for physical education! It might take some creativity at times, but fully funding physical education is possible.
Finally, physical education should not have to rely solely on grants. As you do get grants and new funding sources, always advocate within your district to show the value of investment so that in future years the school itself will consider budgeting for physical education curriculum, technology, and equipment.