While teaching can be a rewarding and life-affirming profession, educators sometimes find themselves frustrated when schools are unable or unwilling to fund the provision of new technologies, teaching supplies, or training programs for staff.
Indeed, it can be easy to forget the importance of proper funding in schools. Even the most talented of teachers find their jobs difficult when funds are running low, as handling oversized classrooms and attempting to teach kids with out-of-date textbooks can feel like a losing battle. Of course, tough teaching environments can also have consequences outside of the classroom. If a teacher is unable to live up to their student achievement targets, they may find that their jobs are in jeopardy.
Students may also suffer, as inadequate teaching resources could impact their grades and leave them feeling stressed out about the future. Indeed, kids of all abilities are likely to come up against some kind of trouble when faced with overcrowded classrooms. In classrooms of mixed academic ability, some of the smartest students will not be able to shine as much of the teacher’s attention will be spent helping those that require extra guidance.
In this kind of situation, teachers often find that their jobs are not as fulfilling as they had once hoped. It can be hugely frustrating if kids are unable to reach their full potential due to a lack of funds, with some teachers even deciding to leave the profession despite their passion for helping young people.
How can these issues be tackled?
Encouraging teachers to stay in the profession requires concerted efforts to help develop their skills and to treat them with the respect that they deserve. Indeed, it is important that teachers are given the option of taking on professional development courses to bolster their confidence and help them to develop innovative ways of teaching younger generations.
Of course, helping teachers to do their job by providing an adequate amount of supplies is also absolutely imperative. Losing overworked teachers frustrated by a lack of school funding is a great shame and something that we as a society should tackle. After all, teachers help to nurture and develop our youth. Few other jobs are so vital or necessary.
How can teachers and schools get extra funding?
Funding is often hard to come by in today’s financially strained world. Fortunately, the internet has opened up new ways for educators to attract donations.
Putting money towards schools is an incredible act of generosity that could vastly improve the lives of teachers and students. If you’ve been inspired to direct some of your hard-earned cash towards some of the country’s fabulous teachers (or if you’re a teacher hoping to collect funds) we’ve put together a comprehensive list of funding sites you can try today:
TeacherFunder is a website designed to allow teachers to collect funding and donations for their classrooms (as well as a little extra for being fantastic educators!). The site places emphasis on the importance of the teaching profession and aims to empower and thank teachers for doing what is often under-appreciated work.
The process for making donations on TeacherFunder could not be easier. Teachers can make an account by signing up and filling out a few pieces of information. They can then publish a profile detailing all of the great work that they do. Once everything is up and running, people can start donating money to their page.
2. Funds for Teachers
Funds for Teachers aims to invest in teachers’ professional development and growth with a view to boosting student success rates, improving teacher practice, and generally strengthening schools and their communities.
Funds for Teachers allows users to write grant applications according to a template tailored for a specific state’s professional development requirements, as well as requirements for supplies or new technologies. Teachers can even take a look at successful grant proposals for inspiration.
3. National Endowment of the Humanities
If you work within a humanities discipline, the National Endowment of the Humanities could provide opportunities for you to travel in order to broaden your horizons and learn new things. Trips can be taken domestically or abroad and all expenses will be paid (including accommodation, air travel, daily meals, and excursions). Making the most of this opportunity could help to develop your teaching practice by opening you up to new ideas and cultures.
4. The National Endowment for the Arts
Are you an art teacher with some ideas for a new project to involve your students in? The National Endowment for the Arts could be a great place to seek funding. The organization offers a selection of fellowships and grants for people that teach arts-related subjects such as English, art, or creative writing.
GetEdFunding is an invaluable site that helps educators and schools identify the kinds of funding they need when finances get tight through a special grant-finding search tool. The site hosts thousands of grants for educational purposes including awards for outstanding educators, grants for teachers in need, opportunities for an array of public and private schools, grants for administrators, and special educational programs.
Teachers can also develop themselves professionally by browsing the site’s scholarly articles and selection of free webinars and videos. There is are also online communities that teachers can visit for support and a virtual teacher’s lounge to enjoy during a few minutes of precious downtime.
6. The National Education Association Foundation
Not to be confused with the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Education Association (NEA) Foundation is a public charity that was founded by teachers and for teachers to boost the caliber of public education for students across the country.
The organization offers grants to teachers regardless of whether they are members of the NEA or not. Over the past decade or so, they have awarded over $7 million in funding to almost 4,500 public school teachers in order to enhance the quality of their teaching. The NEA also provides free scholarly resources and professional development advice online.
Teach.com is an online database offering teachers an array of helpful resources covering topics such as professional development and improving student attainment. It also offers a helpful guide to ways that teachers can source funding to improve their teaching practice and help students.
8. The McCarthey Dressman Education Foundation
The McCarthey Dressman Education Foundation offers grants to small groups of teachers to attend intensive professional development courses that will allow them to bolster student achievement in their schools.
9. Donors Choose
Donors Choose is a site founded by Charles Best, a history teacher who channeled much of his salary into funding classroom supplies. He set the website up in the year 2000 with the aim of helping teachers to collect donations to fund their classrooms. In 2003, Oprah Winfrey plugged the site on her television show, and it attained instant popularity, with around $250,000 going straight to educators.
The site itself is very easy to use. Teachers can post projects that they feel their schools need such as field trips, extra classroom supplies, or new software. Users can then donate as much as they are able to the project. Donors Choose will then order the necessary supplies and ship them directly to the school.