How We Award Grants

Grants are awarded to increase opportunities for students in curricula, facilities and various learning options by securing resources from diverse sources of funding through broad community involvement. To achieve these goals, we take varied approaches to our work by supporting classrooms directly through our annual teacher grants and working closely with our teachers and administrators to identify projects that will have the most impact on our students.

Our mission is broad and we carefully consider student impact and how donor funds can be used most effectively.

Grant Process

The Project Committee reviews all submissions. You will be notified within 4 weeks after the deadline date with the results of your application. The Foundation is always looking for new projects and encourages parents, students and other groups to submit their ideas. Please keep in mind that our funds are limited in relation to the large number of worthwhile inquiries we receive. Projects that are more likely to affect a larger number of students in the areas of education, technology or the arts are more likely to match the Foundation’s goals. Incomplete grant forms will not be considered. In addition to ensuring appropriate use of our grant funds, there are mandatory reporting procedures for making and monitoring grants. If a grant is approved, the payment from the foundation will be negotiated according to the needs of the grant.



Teacher Grants

Applications accepted March 15th through May 7th

The St. Joseph Public Schools Foundation provides grants to teachers for activities and programs that are not funded by the general fund of the school district. These are grants specific for teachers to use in their classrooms. These are only awarded once a year and we encourage teachers to plan ahead. An email will be sent to all teachers as a reminder of the application process and due date.  Grants will be awarded at the annual opening day breakfast.


Carmen A. Grandy Award for Teaching Excellence

​This award was established in 2017 by Charles, Lori, Leah and David Grandy in honor of their mother/grandmother, Carmen A. Grandy, who taught in the St. Joseph Public Schools from 1967 through 1995. Carmen was born in 1937, and understood the importance of education from an early age. She was the first person in her family to obtain a college degree, earning her Bachelor of Science in Education from Western Michigan University in 1959. Carmen began teaching in Bridgman, before serving the vast majority of her 34-year career as a teacher, cheerleading coach, mentor and colleague at St. Joseph Public Schools. Throughout her career, she regularly explored potential approaches, techniques and tools to enhance her teaching methods and improve learning outcomes for students. While she was passionate about her students learning math, she was even more eager to help them transition into high school and beyond to become quality adults. She positively impacted literally thousands of students during her career in public education.


The Carmen A. Grandy Award for Teaching Excellence will be granted annually to a secondary (SJHS or Upton MS) teacher(s) to explore and implement innovative teaching ideas in the classroom designed to improve learning outcomes for students. The award(s) will be up to $2,500/annually and may be split among qualifying teachers. This award will be selected from qualifying Teacher Grant applications.


New Teacher Welcome Grant

These are grants specific for teachers to use in their classrooms and are only awarded during the first year of a teacher’s employment with the district.  Funds must be used during that academic year.


Special Fund Requests

Applications due October 1 and March 1

Special Fund Requests are grants for administrators and club advisors for school projects that typically don’t happen in the classroom under the direction of one teacher.  These may be for after school groups, special interest projects or district wide initiatives.  Examples of grants given under this category are the Upton Career Day, Science Olympiad funds, District-wide license for media viewing, etc. The focus must be on academics within the District.

Questions or Comments?

Please contact Sue Riemland, Executive Director, with additional questions using the form below or call (269) 926-3252



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