Grants available for summer learning programs for pre-K – grade 3: First-round applications due Nov. 17

Little Rock, Ark. (October 16, 2017) – Arkansas Community Foundation is accepting proposals for grants to organizations that will provide summer learning programs to increase reading skills for public school students in pre-K through grade 3.  Nonprofit organizations and schools can go to to apply online for grants from the Summer Learning Initiative. 

"Research tells us that a child’s early experiences with reading will influence his or her entire educational career,” said Heather Larkin, president and CEO of Arkansas Community Foundation. “Summer Learning Initiative grants give us the opportunity to make significant investments in summer programs that help Arkansas kids retain what they learn during the school year and prevent summer learning loss."

"Public resources to support summer learning programs are limited.  Through these grants, we hope to demonstrate the impact on academic outcomes of investing in quality summer learning,” said Angela Duran, campaign director for the Arkansas Campaign for Grade-Level Reading.

Summer Learning Initiative grants are intended to support and extend the efforts of the Arkansas Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, which has identified summer learning as one of five key strategies to help Arkansas kids improve their literacy skills by Grade 3. Currently, only 21 percent of Arkansas students have access to quality summer learning programs.  

Nonprofit organizations working in partnership with local public schools in any area of the state are eligible to apply. Proposals should target children entering pre-K through Grade 3. Programs should follow the Arkansas Curriculum Frameworks and include a focus on literacy (although other areas of focus like math, science or the arts are also encouraged). 

Priority consideration will be given to programs that show evidence of strong nonprofit/school partnership (including financial and/or in-kind participation from the school/district, such as personnel, space, transportation, meals, etc.) and serve a partner school at which 50 percent or more of students receive free or reduced-price lunch. 

The application process will involve two stages: first, applicants will submit a first-round application online and then the strongest applications will be invited to submit a full proposal. More information about guidelines and applications is available at  

Arkansas Community Foundation is a nonprofit organization that fosters smart giving to improve communities. The Community Foundation offers tools to help Arkansans protect, grow and direct their charitable dollars as they learn more about community needs. By making grants and sharing knowledge, the Community Foundation supports charitable programs that work for Arkansas and partners to create new initiatives that address the gaps.  Since 1976, the Community Foundation has provided more than $179 million in grants and partnered with thousands of Arkansans to help them improve our neighborhoods, our towns and our entire state. Contributions to the Community Foundation, its funds and any of its 28 affiliates are fully tax deductible. 

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