LEARNING for Equity Grants

Investing in Recovery to Level the Playing Field

With a new mission laser-focused on equity, the Berkeley Public Schools Fund is currently re-orienting programs and resources to support and amplify work that levels the playing field for the students furthest from opportunity.

LEARNING for Equity grants (formerly Classroom Grants) are designed to support small-to-medium-sized projects that involve multiple educators in a “cohort” at a single school (or in some specific cases, across schools).

Award amounts range from $1,000 to $10,000.

Come discuss project ideas at the Schools Fund’s new Office Hours

Check out this Side-by-side Comparison of LEARNING for Equity and LEADING for Equity grants

Priority Funding Area(s)

LEARNING for Equity proposals will be prioritized where they clearly support at least 1 of the Schools Fund’s priority funding areas:

  • Emotional Health & Wellness* 
  • Digital Equity
  • Equitable Family Engagement
  • Positive Racial Identity Development
  • Inclusive & Culturally Relevant Learning

*for any/all students (this year)

Explicit About Equity

LEARNING for Equity proposals will be evaluated based on the following equity dimensions:

  • For whom? (Who is the proposed audience?)
  • By whom? (What relevant qualifications do the educators have?)
  • What? (What is the curriculum or content?)
  • How? (What is the chosen pedagogy? How will the project be implemented?)

Cohort Collaboration

To drive cohort-based systems change, LEARNING for Equity proposals will be evaluated based on:

  • the number of committed participants in a particular cohort
  • the systems & structures designed for collaboration, coordination & communication of the cohort

“Cohorts” are comprised of a Project Leader (the applicant) and colleagues who are also committed to the project.

  • In BUSD, many cohorts exist at a single school. For example, grade-level teams, subject/function-area teams, LEARNS/BEARS Instructional Techs at a site, or counselors @ Berkeley High.
  • In some cases, cohorts exist across schools. For example, TK educators, Science Resource Teachers, OFEE Specialists, and Garden Educators).
  • LEARNING for Equity proposals from a single educator will not be accepted.

How Many?

To broaden our reach, the Schools Fund requests that BUSD educators participate (as lead or cohort member) in only one LEARNING for Equity grant per year. (Educators may, however, participate in both a LEARNING and a LEADING grant simultaneously.)

Application Timeline

LEARNING for Equity grants open every fall. For ’21-22:

  • Applications open Mon, Aug 9
  • Applications close at midnight on Sun, Sept 19* 
  • Applicants will be notified of funding status by Fri, Oct 22

*Late applications will not be considered.

Grant writing & Planning Tools

  • LEARNING for Equity Grant Guidelines HERE
  • LEARNING for Equity Application Questions HERE
  • LEARNING for Equity Example Budget HERE
  • LEARNING & LEADING Side-by-side Comparison HERE
  • LEARNING for Equity Office Hours HERE


For Current Grantees Only