• Technology Grant Application

  • The A+ Coalition, an education initiative of the Natchitoches Area Chamber of Commerce, offers a platform for organizations and individuals to get involved, stay informed, and give of their time and resources to make an impact on and advance education in Natchitoches Parish. One way this can be accomplished is through the Coalition’s Technology in Education grant opportunity. Up to $7,000 is awarded on a yearly basis to an educator in Natchitoches Parish for innovative technology used to advance learning and enhance the skills of students.

     


    Eligibility

    Applicants must be currently employed by a Natchitoches Parish school, serving students in Pre-K through 12th grade in an educational setting. Any educator may apply, and the number of applications are not limited; however, all applications must be submitted through the school Principal.

    Application Procedure

    To apply for funding: 

    1. Complete all sections of the grant application. 
    2. Submit ONE COPY of the grant application and any attachments to: 

    maggie.harris@natchitocheschamber.com OR

    Natchitoches Area Chamber of Commerce
                Attn: A+ Coalition
                373 Second Street

                Natchitoches, LA 71457

    1. Grant deadline: December 8, 2019

    Incomplete applications will not be considered; providing false information on an application is cause for denial. 


    Selection Process

    Upon receipt of applications, the Natchitoches Area Chamber of Commerce staff and the A+ Coalition Committee members will conduct a thorough study of each application. If it is determined that additional information is required, applicants will be contacted. 

    General Guidelines

    Grant applications should: 

    • Provide a letter of approval from the school principal, 
    • Demonstrate foresight and careful planning for long-term impact, 
    • Articulate clear, measurable goals,
    • Support specific technology programs, not capital campaigns, 
    • Include an evaluation plan by which goals are measured, 
    • Provide a line-item budget and narrative,
    • Reflect sufficient organizational and managerial capacity to carry out the project, 
    • Provide evidence of fund expenditure within the 2019-2020 academic year. 

    Technology Guidelines

    • Purchases must be between $5,000 and $7,000.
    • Purchases may be anything which supports education in the classroom. Suggestions are included below. Other technologies may be presented but will be pre-screened to evaluate for maintenance and upkeep. 

     

    • 3D Printer & Rapid Prototyping
      • Allows for the introduction of 3D design and printing and is an excellent way to boost STEM learning for all ages. 
      • Approximate cost range per unit = $300 - $4,600

     

     

    • Augie, the Augmented Reality Robot
      • Augie introduces children to coding language, engaging imagination and creativity while helping them further enhance their critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
      • Approximate cost per unit = $59.95

     

    • LEGO® Education SPIKE Prime Set 
      • Colorful LEGO® building elements, easy-to-use hardware, and an intuitive drag-and-drop coding language based on Scratch which engages students through playful learning activities to think critically and solve complex problems, regardless of their learning level. 
      • Approximate cost per set = $329.95

     

    • LEGO® Education WeDo 2.0 Core Set 
      • LEGO® kits which allow for learning basic robotics.
      • Approximate cost per unit = $198.00

     

    • LEGO® Mindstorms (NXT or EV3 models)
      • Intelligent brick with 32-bit microprocessor. Icon-based drag-and-drop program building environment.
      • Approximate cost per unit = $474

     

    • Micro Bits
      • Handheld, programmable micro-computer which can be used for all sorts of cool creations, from robots to musical instruments.
      • Approximate cost per unit = $20.00

     

    • The Piper Computer Kit
      • Kit which includes everything needed to build a fully functioning computer from start to finish. Once the computer is built, kids progress to a guided series of fun and engaging challenges.
      • Approximate cost per unit = $299.00

     

    • Oculus Go 3D Virtual Reality Headsets.
      • Headsets/Goggles which allow for immersion into various virtual reality applications. 
      • Approximate cost per unit = $250.00

     

    • VEX EDR Robotic Kit
      • Easy-to-use kit that enables effective learning for both beginners and experts. 
      • Approximate cost per unit = $600

     

    • VEX IQ Robotic Kit
      • A super kit that takes educational robotics to the next level by teaching important lessons about variable shot power and kinetic energy stored by machines. The wide variety of additional parts allows students to build a bigger, stronger, and more functional robot. 
      • Approximate cost per unit = $545

     

    • WonderWorkshop: Dash, Cue, Dot
      • Family of robots and age-appropriate apps to encourage hands-on play and learning to make creative problem-solving concrete and tangible.
      • Approximate cost per unit: 
        • Dash = $150.00, 
        • Cue = $199.99,
        • Dot = $79.99.

     

    • Purchases may go to one or more educational settings in a single school. 
      • Having 20 pieces of equipment set up in a library is as acceptable as having 2 pieces of equipment in ten different classrooms/resource setting.
    • Educators should contact the Natchitoches Parish School Board’s Technology Director to confirm which technologies are acceptable and/or allowed in schools.
    • The Computer Information Systems and Engineering Technology areas at NSU are willing to provide training sessions on the use of the above suggested technologies. If an educator chooses a different technology, these areas may still be able to assist, but it will depend on the technology.
    • In the application process, educators may show how they would incorporate the assistance of a Computer Information Systems or Engineering Technology student in the use of technology in the classroom. 

    Evaluation Guidelines

    In reviewing grant proposals, the A+ Coalition generally utilizes the following evaluation criteria: 

    • Is there an established need for the project for which the grant is requested? How was that need determined? 
    • Is the applicant in a position to effectively manage the project? 
    • How many students will be directly served by the project? 
    • Is the project well planned and likely to succeed, per the outcomes noted in the application? 
    • Is the budget realistic? Are existing dollars being used to supplement the project?

     


    Grant Agreement

    By submitting this Technology in Education grant application, the applicant agrees to the following: 

    1. Funds received will be expended only for the purposes stated in the grant application and must be approved by the Natchitoches Parish School Board’s Technology Director. 
    2. The technology maintenance is to be performed by the recipient of the grant, and is not guaranteed to be supported by the Natchitoches Parish School Board technology department.
    3. Depending on the technology purchased, additional documentation may be required. 
    4. At the conclusion of the grant period, June 1, 2020, a written FINAL REPORT describing the activities carried out and benefits to the students from the grant usage must be submitted to the A+ Coalition. 
    5. The A+ Coalition may monitor and conduct an evaluation of operations under this grant, including requesting financial records related to the grant, which, if requested, should be provided in a timely manner. 
    6. The grant may be discontinued, modified, or withheld if, in the A+ Coalition’s sole judgment, such action is necessary. 
    7. No grant funds from the A+ Coalition may be used for propaganda purposes, to influence legislation or to influence the outcome of an election. 
    8. Any request for a change in purpose of use of grant funds must be submitted in writing to the A+ Coalition and approved before said changes may take effect or expense is incurred . 
    9. Any portion of grant funds not used in accordance with these terms must be returned to the A+ Coalition. 
    10. Publicity around the grant award is encouraged. Any promotional materials, press releases, etc. produced in connection with or to publicize the funded program must note that it was “funded in part” or “sponsored by the Natchitoches Area Chamber of Commerce A+ Coalition”. It is required that the A+ Coalition’s logo be used in such publications. 
    11. Any photos taken by representatives of the Chamber or the A+ Coalition are the property of the Chamber and A+ Coalition and will be used accordingly on public channels; the grantee shall help as necessary to secure permissions needed, if any, for such use.