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Fractured Prism

Welcome to the Fractured Prism. This is my domain (I love the sound of that, kind of like my kingdom), where I will share reflections of the many facets of my life. At the very least, I am a daughter, wife, mother, grandmother, friend, homemaker, teacher, counselor, and grant writer. Through the years, I have been professionally cut and polished or just accidental fractured into thousands of pieces and have thoughts about them all. I have found that I am writing for many reasons but mostly to share my small bits of wisdom. Come back often because each reflection will be different. My ultimate goal is to have a place where grant writers, grant reviewers and funders can network. So if you are into grant writing or grant reviewing please leave your name and email. Linda Beason

Peer Reviews

The peer review section is provided for those who are interested in being peer reviewers. I am not sure that all the contact information is current but you can always call the office and get current information.

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Category: Grant Writing

Federal Funding Update for Youth Programs – Your Call to Action!

PLEASE READ!!!!  These are wonderful programs that we need to keep.

On Saturday, February 19 the House passed H.R. 1, its funding proposal for fiscal year (FY) 2011.  The House’s proposal includes $100 billion in cuts compared to the President’s FY 2011 budget. The proposal includes zeroing out the following youth programs: Mentoring Children of Prisoners, YouthBuild, Teen Pregnancy Prevention Community Grants, Teach for America, and State Grants for Incarcerated Youth.  It also significantly cuts the Corporation for National and Community Service, Juvenile Justice programs, Head Start and 21st Century Learning Centers.

For a complete list of cuts and reductions, you can click here:

The steep cuts set up a potential marathon spending battle with the Senate that, if not resolved by March 4th, could result in the first shut-down of the federal government in more than 20 years. 
What Will Happen Next:
According to Youth Today, “Who delivers the message will also matter. It will likely fall to champions of youth programs in the Senate to hold the line on any spending. ‘The Senate’s going to need to buck up, and it’s our responsibility to help them buck up,’ said Seth Turner, senior director of government affairs for Goodwill Industries. ‘Anybody being quiet is going to get creamed’.”
Since the House passed H.R. 1, focus will now turn toward the Senate. It remains to be seen how the two chambers will reconcile their differences. However, youth organizations must ensure that ALL Members of Congress understand how important it is to protect programs serving at-risk youth.
The National Alliance recommends programs  MAKE A LOT OF NOISE, so Congress understands that current allocations are simply not enough to serve this vulnerable population and to address the effects of the recession.  Additional youth advocacy organizations suggest:
Contact the youth/children staff members in your Representatives’ AND Senators’ Washington, DC offices. Call THIS WEEK.  Use a sample letter or sample talking points as a model. For example, or
If you’ve already called, that’s okay – call again! Now that there is a specific bill passed, you have something to respond to.
Report any responses from you or your networks to your national advocacy groups so your voice is part of many.

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Free Grant Writing Training

The Foundation Center offers free webinars that are short online grant writing training.  Register to participate without cost.

Topics include grantwriting basics, proposal budgeting, and finding funders (as well as other topics).

The Center also offers free longer tutorials, interactive online training courses that reinforce lessons with interactivity, assignments, and self-tests.  (Some tutorials have a cost but many are free.)

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Grant Writer Links

If you are a grant writer you should really check out this site:

Lots and lots of great links.  This collection of websites include funding and grant information, training and technical assistance opportunities, strategies for implementing and enhancing your efforts, state contacts for funding, employment website, peer review opportunities and so much more.

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(Thanks to Dr. Nelson Alba)

Contact:         Brian J. Pritchard, Grants Liaison
US Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA)
For LEAs with Military Dependent Student Populations of Five Percent or More
The Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) will soon announce its FY 2011 grant program.  Approximately $30 million is expected to be awarded, depending on the availability of funding.  Projected period of performance is 01 Jun 11 to 31 Aug 14.  Awards will be based on military dependent student enrollment and will range in size from $100,000 to $2,500,000. 
The Department’s aim is to improve student achievement, increase educational opportunities, ensure student preparation for success in college and careers, and ease the challenges that transitions and deployments have on military dependent students. 
To be eligible to apply an LEA must have a military dependent student population of at least five percent AND have one or more schools that have a military dependent student population of at least 15 percent.  LEAs will certify the numbers and percentages of students, using their Federal Impact Aid data. 
The Federal Register announcement is expected to be published on or about January 7, 2011.  The Request for Consideration (RFC) will be posted at that time on DoDEA’s web site:   
If you have any questions, please contact: 
        Brian J. Pritchard, Grants Liaison

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Good Links for Grant Writers Part 3

More links for grant writers: 

National Telecommunications and Information Administration
This site provides information about the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), which funds planning and construction grants.

Kathy Schrock’s Guide for Educators – Grant Sources for Educators
This site supplies federal, state, and private funding opportunities and provides links to individual states’ Web sites.

National Reading Panel
This site will provide you with the complete text of the National Reading Panel’s report about what works and what doesn’t in reading. It provides the recipe for “scientific-based reading research and efficacy” which is expected in all reading programs.

U.S. Department of Education
This site provides information and links for all federal grants and initiatives issued under the direction of the DOE.

Teacher Tap  —  This site has grant writing tips and links to other resources and grants.

Top Teaching Resources   —  Links to grants for educators.

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Good Links for Grant Writers Part 2

Here are some more good links for grant writers. 

Publications and Products
This U.S. Department of Education Web site provides a wealth of information for teachers, administrators, policymakers, researchers, parents, and students.

Federal Register Documents Announcements Application Notices Requests for Comment etc.

This site offers up-to-the-minute information on grants provided by federal government agencies, including the Department of Education.

US Dept. of Education Grants Forecast FY 2010
This site forecasts prospective funds allocated by the federal government.

National Science Foundation (NSF) 
Opportunities for mathematics and science grants may be found on this site.

Welcome to Schools and Libraries (E-Rate)
Library systems, school districts and non-public schools can apply for discounts on telecommunications at this site.

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Good Links for Grant Writers Part 1

These links provide good resources for grant writers.  I will be posting more as I check them out to see if they are all still in place.

Guide for Writing a Funding Proposal
At this site, Dr. S. Joseph Levine of Michigan State University gives advice on how to write successful proposals.

Here you can learn how to write winning proposals. This site is sponsored by the Human Frontier Science Program.

SchoolGrants – Your One-Stop Site for K-12 School Grant Opportunities
Here you will find grant–writing tips, sample proposals (including my PEP grant), and grant writing CDs, as well as funding sources.

Fundraising and Grantwriting Resources
This site provides a collection of links to funding applications; grant writing consultants and services; grant writing tutorials and help; funding sources; and more.

Database of U.S. Department of Education Publications in ERIC
Here you will find a searchable database of government research documents that can support your winning proposals.

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Find Federal Grants Fast!

If you are interested in finding about Federal grants as soon as they are announced, go to this site and you will receive daily notification of all new Federal grant opportunities.  Subscribe at:

If you only want to find out about specific types of grants, go to this site and check areas of interest:

You might also want to have them send you updates or critical tips from this site:

Or you can use this application to get both announcements and updates without cluttering your email:

By the way if you haven’t checked out, you should!!! is a central storehouse for information on over 1,000 grant programs and provides access to approximately $500 billion in annual awards. is a source to FIND and APPLY for federal grants. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is the managing partner for, an initiative that is having an unparalleled impact on the grant community. Learn more about and determine if you are eligible for grant opportunities offered on this site.

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Time and Grant Writing

(More great grant writing tips from my friend and colleague, Dr. Nelson Alba.)

Before you start putting your grant application together make yourself a working plan.  First, make yourself a fast working plan of salient working steps on the grant. Most grants have a page limitation and required format such as number of pages, doubled space and in some cases type of font to use. Mark those down.

Page limitations require every word in the application is clean and related to the main argument you are making.  Acronym, abbreviation, or initials are a problem. Although they may save you some space in the long run they create a problem for the person reading your grant application.  The grant reader has a limited amount of time to read, analyze and make recommendations. The load may be from five to twelve grants followed by a discussion with other readers. Time is of the essence. In addition, grant readers are required to spell-out all names. Get the idea? If a reader has to stop and find out what an acronym means because he cannot remember, the blame is on you. Important, keep your reader happy. It pays off.

Remember, writing less and making sense is more difficult than writing more. A word on charts and graphs. Charts and graphs can be very helpful and adorns your work. Make sure you need a chart or graph and that they are clear and make sense where you use them. They can also take up a lot of room you may need for cogent information. Be selective and avoid the fancy stuff. Nobody has time for that.

Make sure critical information, and I mean critical information, used on a graph or chart is also included in the written section of your application. You may think you are being repetitious but that is why it is called critical information. Some folks don’t do well reading charts.

Again, above all, place your information and details in the place that was asked for. There is nothing a grant reader enjoys more than an orderly application. One final word, if you want to finish quickly, take your time and you will not have as many corrections. As Napoleon use to say to his valet “Take your time dressing me, I’m in a hurry!”

 Good hunting.

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The ABC’s of Grant Applications

(This post is from a friend I met while reviewing grants.  He is an excellent  grant reviewer and offers some great advice.  He is currently the Director of an Adult Outreach Program and has classes for displaced workers, elderly community, mandate divorce classes and re-entry of newly released incarcerated individuals in a number of disciplines.  If you would like to get in touch with him, leave a comment and I will send him your information.  Thanks to Dr. Nelson Alba!)

The words “Grant Application” give shivers to many people and visions of complex formulas. There are a few steps you can take to make your application more appealing to the persons reading the material you will submit.

A. Keep It Short And Simple. Do not over state your case. Make sure all you write is related to the application. Do not get too wordy. If the reader has to guess what you are saying, is going to cost you.

 B. Order, Order. If at all possible address the grant application in the order it was presented to you. The reader will follow a form in the exact order it was given to you. Readers love orderly applications. If you can, provide a bold title to each section for faster identification.

C. Time is of the essence. If you plan to apply for a grant, the sooner you start writing the better. Stress can make you make mistakes otherwise avoidable. Plan ahead your work.

D. Spell check. It cannot be stressed enough the importance of avoiding simple spelling errors. It is very distracting to the reader to see grammar and spelling errors. So, spell check and then spell check again.

E. No Generalizations. Avoid generalizations that might get you in trouble. Make sure you can provide facts, examples or both on the argument you are trying to make.

F. No Tears, Please. Do not attempt to appeal to the emotions of the readers. You do not get extra points for it and takes up space for more cogent information.

G. Finally. Place yourself in the position of the reader who does not know you or your ambiance. Read your final application and see if any section is not clear or misleading.  Is your application complete?

H. Only the Facts.  Do not try to pull the wool over the eyes of the reader. These folks are professionals and have ample experience in identifying boloney.

Remember, if you start to work early and you have a solid need and a potential solution, writing the grant is not all the difficult. Good hunting!

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