Educators across the country have witnessed the incredible changes and challenges schools face in the modern era. We believe independent schools, with their ability to adapt and innovate, are uniquely positioned to find solutions and model new practices. Collaboration with others fosters creativity and goodwill. Schools who collaborate with other organizations are able to accomplish greater goals for themselves and the community.
The Stephen P. Robinson Collaboration Grants were created to encourage independent schools to form new partnerships with other schools, institutions of higher education, businesses, and/or non-profits. SAIS will annually divide a total of $25,000 among two to five member schools. Those applying must demonstrate a vision and capacity to pursue and carry out meaningful collaborations. Successful examples have demonstrated efforts that benefit the greater community or region in unique ways. Schools selected for grants will share their results with the SAIS community by delivering a presentation at the SAIS Annual Conference, and submitting a publishable paper.
On the form you must include a description of how the funds will be spent (be as specific as possible), a timeline for implementation, and a description of the people/resources involved.
Funds will be awarded in February and must be used by the conclusion of the following school year.
Additional elements you may wish to address (this is not intended to be comprehensive, but some of these are general parameters considered by the committee):
Validity of project:
What research demonstrates a need or desire for the project
What makes you think you have the capacity to complete the project?
Is the project able to be replicated?
Reach of project:
Intended Impact of project on community / environment, etc
Are there partners / collaborators? And what is their role in developing and deploying project (remember, this is a collaboration grant)
Longevity of project –
Does it outlast this funding cycle?
Can the project be sustained?
Impact of Project
How will this be measured?
How will you know if it is successful?
How much risk is there that the project will not be successful?
The committee has been very cautious with overt outreach projects and also avoided projects that felt like they were mostly about marketing the school.
Recipients of grants will track the life of their project and make a presentation outlining their journey at the SAIS Annual Conference in October. They will also submit a paper to SAIS to be published.
Episcopal School of Baton Rouge, Second Baptist School, The Dunham School, The Galloway School, and Canterbury School
Episcopal School of Baton Rouge, LA, will collaborate with public schools and other community organizations to hold a college fair, bringing colleges to students who may have difficulty traveling to college campuses. A small fair was held in March 2015, and the school plans to expand the fair to include more students, families, schools, and colleges.
Second Baptist School, Houston, TX, will collaborate with Mount Vernon Presbyterian School, Atlanta, GA, to produce a prototype of a sanitation device to be used outside of shelters or organizations that serve populations in need. The purpose is to quickly and easily sanitize hands of citizens who cannot receive necessary hygienic procedures from staying in the shelter. This project presents a challenging problem for students across grade levels to work to create a viable solution in collaboration with one another.
The Dunham School, Baton Rouge, LA, will partner with Louisiana State University (LSU) to complete learning games using Breakout EDU boxes. In this project, LSU preservice teachers will learn effective strategies for teaching critical thinking and implementing technology into a middle school setting. Both LSU preservice teachers and The Dunham School students will be active participants in critical thinking activities that require problem solving and promote teamwork.
The Galloway School, Atlanta, GA, is hosting the BOLD Summit in July 2016. It is a four-day professional development opportunity for educators of color who are looking to further their careers and are actively seeking out leadership opportunities. Through large and small group instructional sessions, lecture, and individual instruction, participants will explore who they are as leaders, leadership styles, areas of personal growth, and how to best present themselves. Through deep dialogue, and evidence-based best practices, educators will leave the BOLD Summit with better understandings of themselves and leadership as an educator of color in independent school settings.
Canterbury School, Greensboro, NC, will hold the Canterbury Summer Science Academy (CSSA), which provides a unique opportunity free of charge to disadvantaged and underrepresented Guilford County public high school students who show a passion for and academic potential in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math subjects and careers. It is a collaborative effort between Canterbury School and NCA&T/UNCG's Joint School of Nanoscience and Nanoengineering (JSNN). Students work closely with both the Canterbury School lead science teacher and the professors and graduate students of the JSNN, participating in hands-on inquiry-based science, conducting authentic research, and communicating their results in a community forum at the end of their weeklong experience.
The Bodine School, Carolina Friends School, McCallie School and Girls Preparatory School, The Master's Academy, and The Westminster Schools and The Lovett School
The Bodine School, Memphis, TN, will provide instruction in Orton-Gillingham (OG) methodology to Teach For America (TFA) teachers in the Memphis public schools.
Carolina Friends School, Durham, NC, will partner with Duke University and Peaceful Schools NC to help Carter Community Charter School become a Peaceful School, a designation that demonstrates training to minimize bullying and aggression and support child-centered learning environments.
McCallie School and Girls Preparatory School, Chattanooga, TN, will launch "Consequential Philanthropy," a course where students will engage with non-profits and government organizations to learn about the problems facing Chattanooga. The students will research and interview organizations they want to support, and disperse funds to those organizations.
The Master's Academy, Oviedo, FL, will support collaboration among math teachers in their region by establishing Central Florida Math Educators. The group will share best practices through digital communications and hold an annual CFME Collaboration Workshop.
The Westminster Schools and The Lovett School, Atlanta, GA, will launch "Atlanta 2.0: Urban Design Fellowship," where students from each school will study how the design of Atlanta's public spaces impacts community development.