Where the Silicon Valley Community Foundation is Putting its Teacher Development Money

All across the country, K-12 education grantmaking is fixated on achieving Common Core State Standards in struggling public schools. To show its support for the Common Core last year, the Silicon Valley Community Foundation (SVCF) awarded $400,000 to four school districts in San Mateo and Santa Clara County and $1.1 million to a math instruction project South San Francisco, Cabrillo, and La Honda-Pescadero Unified School Districts (Read: What’s Behind SVCF’s Support of the Common Core?).

More recently, grantmaking efforts have shifted to teacher development and training strategies, especially in the field of mathematics. In a recent press release, SVCF announced another $768,407 commitment to helping San Mateo and Santa Clara middle school teachers develop their mathematics instruction skills. Thousands of middle schools students in ten school districts stand to benefit from the professional development programs, which are targeted at nearly 400 local educators.

“Teacher effectiveness is the number one determinant of student success,” said Gina Dalma, senior program officer for education grantmaking at SVCF. “Over the past several years, we have invested in teacher professional development and in systems that support continuous improvement, and we know this is helping our region’s children be more successful academically.”

These recent grants align with SVCF’s overall education strategy aimed at closing the mathematics achievement gap among middle school students in the region. There’s a new application process in place for grantseekers looking to tap into SVCF’s revamped in-school and out-of-school strategies. In-school grants support teacher effectiveness in the classroom and range from $50,000 to $100,000. Recent in-school math grants include a $99,543 grant to the Jefferson Elementary School District in Daly City, an $87,500 grant to Pivot Learning Partners, and a $100,000 grant to the New Teacher Center.

The next in-school program Request for Proposals (RFP) release date is October 14th, with proposals due November 14th. If you can, plan to attend the October 16th info session to learn more about what SVCF is looking for in future grantees.

If your nonprofit is more of an out-of-school organization, you should know that SVCF is looking to support programs that offer math-specific instruction, improve student analytical skills, build community partnerships, and use student data to monitor progress. The RFP release date for the out-of-school program is August 18th, and there’s an info session you can attend on August 19th to learn more.