As announced in late July, the Government of Alberta has released that schools will be opening under Scenario One conditions in September 2020. With only a few more weeks to go before schools are open and running, this might be an opportune moment to explore your options for funding beyond the district sanctioned amounts. Schools are unpredictable, and unanticipated costs can arise almost daily. That being said, having an additional float in your budget can give you the preparedness to navigate unforeseen costs, the flexibility to quickly adapt, and the means to make improvements where you see fit. We’ve put together a quick, comprehensive guide on understanding government grants for schools in Alberta, along with some helpful links below.
Firstly, Education Government Grants in Alberta are broken down into 5 categories: Base Instruction, Services and Support, School, Community and Jurisdiction. Understanding how the categories have been broken down will help streamline your search for applicable grants. Each category includes a further breakdown of the types of grants available:
- The Base Instruction category includes grants for Kindergarten, Grades 1 – 9, High School and Rural Schools.
- The Services and Support category includes grants for specialized learning support, Program Unit Funding (PUF), English as a Second Language (ESL)/ Francisation, Refugee and First Nations, Métis, and Inuit.
- The School category is broken down into grants for Operations and maintenance, and transportation.
- The Community category includes grants for socioeconomic status, geography, and nutrition.
- Lastly, the Jurisdiction category includes grants regarding system administration.
Choosing the Right Grant
With such a widespread range of grants available, you’ll need to understand how the grant category breakdown system works. Finding the right grant will depend on your school’s current and upcoming needs. Most funding models are determined by factors like average enrollment rates (weighted moving averages), socioeconomic challenges and geographic disadvantages.
With a new model set for the upcoming school year, the government has explained their plans for a more simplified grant structure, in hopes of reducing red tape and giving authorities more flexibility to determine how to spend their available budget. The hope is to standardize administrative and governance spending in order to maximize dollars towards classrooms. Evidently in a time such as this, having additional dollars in your budget to constantly re-evaluate student well-being and quality of learning will be essential.
We understand that choosing a grant for your school is not a one-size-fits-all approach. It takes time, eligibility, and careful consideration of your needs to file for a grant, so we’ve provided some additional links to help you and your school make the right choice.
For a full list of available grants for each category, we’ve included the official list below
For additional grants, contests and awards provided by the Alberta Council for Environmental Education (ACEE), we’ve provided a link to their website here:
You can see a better breakdown and description of each category on the Alberta government website:
For projected operational funding for the 2020/21 school year by school jurisdiction, you can read more here:
Contact us for some good insights from our experts!