Sycamore Education Foundation

GRANTS

The SEF grant process provides an opportunity for all Sycamore Community School District 427 teachers, administrators, and students to apply for SEF funds to enhance learning.

To apply for a grant, please fill out downloadable form and return the completed grant application to SEF Executive Director, Lauren Holtz, following the FY20-21 dates below.  Your grant application will be reviewed by the SEF Grants committee and added to the agenda of the next grant review night.

Please note the following guidelines prior to grant submittal:

  • Materials provided by the grant become the property of the school where the grant originated and not the property of any individual or group. Unused project funds after one calendar year will go back to the general grant making fund of SEF.
  • If your grant request exceeds $1,500, you are required to attend the next scheduled grant review night and present to the board for discussion and answer any questions for clarification. If your grant is below $1,500 you are not required to present, but you are welcome to if desired.
  • A post-grant meeting with the SEF Executive Director must be scheduled at least 6 months after funds have been distributed.
  • Grants are not awarded for salaries, travel, consumables, curriculum materials, assessment items, ongoing or recurrent licenses or subscriptions.
  • SEF will fund technology enhancements as long as they are tied to a new and innovative program for District 427.
  • SEF will support pilot program initiatives up to two years. After that point in time, it is the responsibility of the District to provide funding the support the program.
  • You may only serve as the lead author for one grant proposal per year.
  • The Sycamore Education Foundation Board of Directors reserves the right to make amendments to these guidelines at any time.

All grant recipients are encouraged to post on Facebook, Twitter and/or Instagram with a photo or the grant and tag @SycamoreSEF.

February Grant Proposal Deadlines

Principal’s Office Deadline:
Thursday, February 4th

SEF Office Deadline:
Monday, February 8th

Present at SEF Grant Meeting:
Monday, February 22nd at 7 p.m.  — Location TBD

April Grant Proposal Deadlines (pending available grant funds)

Principal’s Office Deadline:
Thursday, April 1st

SEF Office Deadline:
Tuesday, April 6th

Present at SEF Grant Meeting:
Monday, April 19th at 7 p.m. – Location TBD


View previous SEF Grants:

ABLE Program Classroom Updates
2020

Sycamore High School

Lee Zucker and Marion Kneiling received a grant for classroom updates including furniture and sensory supplies for students for the ABLE program.

Shared Alternative/Flexible Seating
2020

Third grade teachers, Kelsi Boltz and Kyla Hueber, received an SEF grant to purchase shared alternative/flexible seating options for their classroom.

Guided Reading Books
2020

Southeast Elementary School

Second grade teacher, Mary Strohm, and literacy facilitator, Holly Majerus received SEF funding for guided reading books to better support their students.

Garden Classrooms

Southeast, South Prairie and West Elementary Schools

Katie Davis received SEF funding to support garden classroom programs within third grade throughout select elementary schools in the Sycamore School District.

Character Studies through Series Books
2020

South Prairie Elementary School

Third grade teacher, Kim Zeitler, received SEF funding to purchase character studies through series books for her classroom.

Sensory Supplies
2020

OSCAR

SEF has provided funding for the Sycamore School District’s  Out of School Care Program (OSCAR).  These funds will go toward purchasing sensory items that will assist students requiring special accommodations.

Makerspace
2020

West Elementary School

SEF has provided funding for makerspace items that will benefit the entire school.  Items include classroom sets of Knex, Magna Tiles, Snap Circuits, Legos, Zoob, etc.

Drones
2020

Sycamore High School

SHS teacher, Christian Thurwanger, received funds from SEF to support the Agriculture/CTE Department.  The funds will purchase drones so that students can learn how they could use these devices in their future careers within industries such as construction, surveying, forestry and agriculture.

SparTECHus IT Help Desk
2020

Sycamore High School

SHS teacher, Annette Keca, received funding from SEF to purchase equipment to support the SparTECHus IT Help Desk program which services the Chromebook computers throughout the Sycamore School District.

Sphero Robots and iPads
2019

Sycamore Middle School

The STEM/CTE Department at the SMS received 15 Sphero Bolt Robots and 8 iPads to support all 6th grade students enrolled in STEM: Engineering and after school clubs.  These devices are designed to inspire curiosity, creativity, and invention through coding.  This technology will help students to foster a love of robotics and STEAM principles… all through play.

Standing Desks
2019

Sycamore Middle School

Each 6th grade classroom received three standing desks.  The students have greatly appreciated having the opportunity to learn in a non-traditional style. Standing has proven to be an effective way to improve memory and focus, and research shows that classroom standing desks can also enhance cognitive skills and improve test scores.

Diverse Books
2019

Sycamore Middle School

The seventh grade population for years to come will benefit from diverse books funded through a grant provided by SEF.  Using literature as a tool, the novels purchased have created an opportunity for students to talk about race, ethnicity, gender, identification, sexual orientation, and disability in a transformative way.

iPads to support Seesaw application
2019

North Grove Elementary School

All 1st grade classrooms received five new iPads for the students to share.  The addition of the new iPads for each classroom has created a 1 iPad per 3 student ratio.  While using the Seesaw application, students can practice their reading fluency, math skills and knowledge, storytelling/summarizing, and more.  The students work collaboratively on this app to share their knowledge and understanding with teachers as well as parents.

Makerspace
2019

South Prairie Elementary School

Students need opportunities to explore, design, build and innovate. South Prairie is excited to start their first markerspace, hands-on area. K’nex, Legos, Strawbees “Crazy Scientist Kit” and more will being included.

Sensory Floor Path
2019

Southeast Elementary School

Students will walk, hop, skip and jump through a series of physical activities with carefully placed floor stickers in the gym hallway. The goal is to help students stay calm and regulate their bodies while at school.

Lego Wall for Maker’s Space
2019

Southeast Elementary School

The lego wall is planned to be placed in the kindergarten hallway to be used by all three kindergarten classrooms at Southeast. This will be in addition and to enhance their already existing maker’s space.

CNC Milling Kit
2019

Sycamore Middle School

The router kit, bits and milling materials will be used for a variety of different projects within each of the STEM/CTE course and after school clubs at the middle school. The machine provides students with another resource when creating solutions to their problem-based learning tasks.

Modeling Instruction for the Modern Physics Class
2019

Sycamore High School

The Science Department at Sycamore High School will be updating some of the physics equipment to utilizing the Modeling Method of physics instruction, align experiments and activities and increate the use of technology in the physics classroom with this new equipment.

Mindfulness
2019

Sycamore Middle School

“Acquiring meditation and mindfulness equipment for our students directly supports the Relationships Sphere’s exit learner outcomes which aim to create “a person who values relationships and balances life’s commitments” as outlined in the district’s Strategic Design Plan. Through meditation, students can briefly unplug from their surrounding and help gain a clearer understanding of themselves and their life while creating balance in the process.”

iPads for Speech and Language Therapy
2018

Sycamore High School

The apps available for the iPad cover a wide range of speech and language disorder interventions. These will allow teachers to model and work one-on-one with students successfully with the the new iPad technology.

Renovating the Library at North Elementary School
2018

North Elementary School

This grant is part of the larger library redesign. New shelving, tables, chairs, circulation equipment, lounge seating, and upgraded technology (computer) lab are part of the renovation. The goal is to provide a safe, positive learning environment for the students and the community.

Everything You Need to Know to Ace World History
2018

Sycamore Middle School

Well-designed history books that provide short, concise, and colorful information that is engaging to the 6th graders at the Middle School.

Google Expeditions Kit
2018

West Elementary School

The use of this technology provides engaging interactive lessons of places all over the world. It’s taking a field trip without leaving the school.

High School PE Yoga Props
2018

Sycamore High School

Yoga straps and bolsters to use during Physical Education classes. Health and wellness is the foundation for success, benefitting the Sycamore students for the future by learning calming techniques, body awareness and more.

Chrome Books for the Classroom & Spartan TV Jr.
2018

Southeast

Spartan TV Access Channel
2018
Digital Signage
2018

Sycamore High School

Scholastic Bowl
2018

Sycamore Middle School

Power Up the Middle School
2018

Sycamore Middle School

Welding Shop Expansion and Upgrade by Students
2018

Sycamore High School

Gallery Revitalization Project
2018

Sycamore High School

LEAF/ABLE MAss Customization Learning
2018

Sycamore Middle School

Solo Performace Books for Band
2018

Sycamore High School

Watershed Research Tools
2018

Sycamore High School

Everything you Need to Know to Ace American History
2018

Sycamore Middle School

Read and Write for Google Chrome
2018

Sycamore High School

Graphing Calculators for At-risk Students
2018

Sycamore High School

1:1 Chromebook Expansion Grant
2018

West Elementary

Row the Boat
2017

Sycamore Middle School

Fiber Installation for Education and Government Channel
2017

Sycamore High School

Collaboration Carpet
2017

Southeast Elementary

The Active Classroom
2017

Southeast Elementary

Providing adjustable height open front desks with swinging foot rest to meet the needs of student with active learning styles.

Poster Maker Machine
2017

District-wide

Little Spartans Wheeled Outdoor Equipment
2017

South Prairie Elementary

Providing Specialized bikes and safety equipment that is easily customized for each child and provides optimal learning and motor skills development.

One District, One Book
2017

All Elementary Schools

Grant by Barresi Family- in honor of Victor, former SEF board member. victorA generous donation from the Barresi family to honor Victor. One District, One Book – This year all five elementary schools are participating in the second One District, One Book in which all families will receive the same book during the first week in March. The schools have organized events including book fairs, daily trivia, and community participation.

Blink Arm Bands in PE
2017

Sycamore Middle School

Utilizing wearable heart rate monitor technology to provide instant feedback to students regarding their heart rate zone and perceived exertion in activity.

Building Reading Fluency
2017

Southeast Elementary

Improving reading skill and fluency for first and second grade students. This is accomplished by providing high quality take home books that can be taught in the class and brought home for repeated readings to build fluency.

“Put It on the Booooard, Yes!”
2017

Sycamore High School

Mobile art displays for the entire district to utilize. Initial use was the 2017 Conference Art Contest hosted by Sycamore.

Cardio Center AV Upgrade, Polar GoFit Heart Rate Monitoring
2016

Sycamore High School

Problem Based Learning Design Institute
2016

District-wide

21st Century Library Media Center
2016

Sycamore High School

Standing to Learn
2016

North Elementary

NIU STEM Reads Experience
2016

Sycamore Middle School

Elementary Books
2016

All Elementary Schools

Elementary Online Learning
2016

All Elementary Schools

PASCO Interfaces
2016

Sycamore High School

Infrared Imaging of Watersheds and their Surrounding Areas
2016

Sycamore High School

Southeast Mustang News (SMN)
2016

Southeast Elementary

Enhancing Tech
2016

South Prairie Elementary

Books!
2016

West Elementary

Modernization to the Welding Shop
2016

Sycamore High School

Orchesis Technology Items
2016

Sycamore High School

English Laptop Cart
2015

Sycamore High School

Spartan TV Broadcast Trailer
2015

Sycamore High School

Mass Customized Learning
2015

Sycamore Middle School

21st Century Library: The Library Commons
2015

Southeast Elementary

LEAF – MCL
2015

Sycamore Middle School

Heart Adventure Course
2015

All Elementary Schools

Technology & Fitness PE/Health
2015

Sycamore Middle School

Fieldhouse Cardio Room
2015

Sycamore High School

Auditorium Communication System
2015

Sycamore High School

Community Garden Compost Project
2015

All Elementary Schools

Class Set of Non-graphing Scientific Calculators
2015

Sycamore High School

iPad Air 2
2015

Southeast Elementary

Flight Control Station
2015

Sycamore High School

Plenty of Plein Air
2015

Sycamore High School

SSD #427 Summer fitness challenge
2015

Southeast and North Elementary Schools

3D Printers
2015

Sycamore Middle School

iPads and accessories for PE Technology
2015

Sycamore High School

Book Mobile
2015

South Prairie Elementary

Women’s Grant – Dumbbells
2015

Sycamore High School

Orchesis Drive-A-Thon Fundraiser for Warm-Ups
2015

Sycamore High School

Caring for the Courtyard
2014

West Elementary

Create authentic writing experiences using technology
2014

Sycamore High School

IXL Learning
2014

Southeast Elementary

Upgrading HS Light Board & Stage Fixtures
2014

Sycamore High School

Yoga mats & resistance bands
2014

Sycamore High School

Enhancing Spartan TV to Multiple HD Cameras
2014

Sycamore High School

SMART Response XE System w/Receiver
2014

Sycamore Middle School

Graphing Calculators
2014

Sycamore Middle School

Graphing Calculator Check-out for Low Income Students
2014

Sycamore High School

Jump Start – The Abe Project Reading Incentive Program
2014

Sycamore High School

SMART Response XE System w/receiver
2013

Sycamore High School

Building Community Through Books
2013

North Elementary

Creating a College/Career Exploration Rm
2013

Sycamore High School

Community Gardens
2013

All Elmentary Schools

iPads for Double-Block Algebra
2013

Sycamore High School

BOSU Trainers, BOSU Storage Rack, and Aerobic Steps
2013

Sycamore High School

SMART response Clickers-Science Dept
2013

Sycamore High School

School Nurse Training Manikin
2013

All Elmentary Schools

School Nurse iPads
2013

Sycamore Middle School

Greenhouse Renovation and Maintenance
2013

Sycamore High School

Using MP3 Video Player during Reading
2013

South Prairie Elementary

The College Solution
2013

Sycamore High School

Replacement of Kiln
2012

West Elementary

Marching Percussion/String Instruments
2012

Sycamore Middle & High Schools

Jolly Phonics Interactive Smartboard Software
2012

Southeast Elementary

IPADs
2012

Sycamore High School

Front Row Sound System
2012

Sycamore High School

Ballet Barres
2012

Sycamore High School

Reading Inst. Utilizing Technology-IPADS
2012

All Elementary Schools

Early Bird Readers
2012

South Prairie Elementary

Going Paperless-The 1 to 1 classroom
2012

West Elementary

OSCAR Assistance Fund
2011

District-wide

SMARTtable
2011

South Prairie Elementary

Keyboards
2011

Sycamore Middle School

SMARTtable Interactive Learning Center
2011

Southeast Elementary

Infusing Technology in the Elementary Classrm
2011

North Grove/Southeast/North

Literacy in the Library
2011

Sycamore Middle School

Stability Balls
2011

Southeast Elementary

iPads
2011

Sycamore Middle School

Math Technology Grant
2011

Sycamore High School

Reading Take-Home Books
2011

All Elementary Schools

Library Cards for Low Income Students
2011

District-wide

Touching Spirit Bear Literature Unit
2011

Sycamore Middle School

Bullying Presentation
2011

Sycamore Middle & High Schools

Learning by Leaps and Bounces
2010

West Elementary

Readpalooza Author Visit
2010

Sycamore Middle School

Library Cards for Low Income Students
2010

District-wide

FASTTMATH
2010

North Elementary

Polar Heart Rate Monitors
2010

Sycamore High School

Books for Boys
2010

Southeast Elementary

North Grove Library
2010

North Grove Elementary

Reading Zone
2010

North Grove Elementary

Service Learning
2010

Sycamore High School

Advancing Math Department Technology
2010

Sycamore High School