Personal tools

Guhl Early Literacy

Guhl Early Literacy Banner

Through the Guhl Trust, Guhl Early Literacy is designed to improve literacy at the PreK – 5 level. This grant supports elementary-level literacy programs or projects with the potential to have a high impact on a large number of students.

The APS Education Foundation envisions its grant programs as an opportunity to pilot new, innovative or promising early learning initiatives in the district, and advance early literacy in a measurable way.

(Click button to apply)


Eligible Applicants:

APS PreK – 5 school principals and APS Departments working with elementary school programs or collaborations of elementary schools are eligible to apply. Members of an APS elementary school’s administrative team, which includes the assistant principal, may also submit an application. If the applicant is not the principal, the applicant must certify that the principal has read the proposal and supports the full application, including the project budget.

Guhl Early Literacy grants will not be funded without the full support of school administration.

Only APS employees may submit applications. Only one application per school will be accepted. APS traditional and magnet schools are eligible to apply. 

Eligible Proposals:

Proposals must meet the following criteria:

  • Serve an entire elementary school or a large percentage of elementary students, such as a grade level or department.
  • Focus on meeting the needs of and improving early literacy outcomes for students and clearly aligned with the district's priorities. 
  • Have clearly defined goals and measurable outcomes to determine the success of the project.
  • Have a realistic budget and use the award to cover teacher stipends, purchased services, and/or supplies and materials within the proposed activity.
  • Demonstrate an effort to raise funds through other sources in an effort to sustain the proposed project.
Recent Award Winners:
SchoolProject TitleGrant Amount
Apache Elementary One School One Book: Using Early Literacy to Stomp Out Bullying At Apache $15,000.00

Grant Term:

Guhl Early Literacy grants may be for up to two years. Schools or departments must be prepared to implement the project (staff availability, activities in place) upon receiving funding. 

Grant Amount:

APS elementary schools and eligible APS Departments may apply between $15,000 and $35,000.

Selection Process and Criteria:

All grant applications are reviewed by a selection committee of APSEF Board members. Applicants must be prepared to make a presentation to the selection committee should an application be selected as a finalist.

Reporting Requirements:

Guhl Early Literacy Award winners are required to report on project outcomes at the end of the grant period. Final reports must be submitted to the APS Education Foundation. Award winners may be ineligible for future funding if this report is not received. All funds must be spent by the end of the grant period. Grant winners may request an extension. If grant funds cannot be spent within the grant period as approved, funds must be returned to the Foundation.

Award winners should also be willing to host site visits, provide success stories, and assist the Foundation with promotional activities.

Other Considerations:

Agreements or partnerships with outside agencies/nonprofit groups should have the approval of APS administration prior to submitting an application. Funding will go to the school, and not directly to an external partner.

Projects funded through Guhl Early Literacy are school-specific. If a teacher changes schools and/or if the school is not able to implement the program, all funds must be returned to the APS Education Foundation.

Criteria for Previously Awarded Grantees

Grant award winners that have been awarded any APS Education Foundation grant for the past two years in a row to fund the same program or project in the same school or department are not eligible for consideration for one school year unless the applicant can state that the program will have a greater student impact than in the previous granted year, has successfully solicited other funding to support the program moving forward and can provide a sustainability plan.  You will be asked to attach this documentation at the end of your grant application. 

Ineligible applicants

  • Have received APS Education Foundation funding for the same program/project at the same site for two years in a row.
  • Funding outlined in the application would affect the same students as previous years.
  • Funding outlined in the application would fund the same program/project as previous years.

To regain eligibility

  • Applicants must expand their program/or project to impact more students.  For example:
    • Join other teachers and staff to apply for a team grant so more classes are included as part of a Classroom & Grade Level Learning grant.
    • Reach out to other schools to expand the program, such as feeder schools.
    • Collaborate with other APS departments to expand the initiative to address more areas of need.
    • Applicants must secure additional funding to support the program moving forward.  For example:
      • A portion of your program will be supported by a school or department budget.
      • Other non-profit organizations and foundations have committed to funding a portion of your program.
      • Your PTA  or other community group will budget to support a portion of your budget.
      • A local business or individual donor would like to sponsor a portion of your budget.
      • Applicants must provide a sustainability plan.  For example:
        • Include plans of how your school or department will continue to support the program for the next three years, including fiscally and/or through their time and effort.
        • Include plans of how you will fund the program past this year of funding for the two years following the grant (if awarded), including researching funding opportunities (be specific).

Grantees who cannot regain eligibility for their third proposal must wait one full year to apply again. 

Note:  Any grantee who did not submit an evaluation at the end of their last grant implementation period is ineligible to apply and cannot regain eligibility through the above process.

If you are currently ineligible but would like guidance on how to apply, please contact Lawren McConnell at  

Grant Writing Tips:

Review the application, and prepare your answers in a Word document before submitting online.

Review the scoring rubric that grant reviewers will be using during the review and selection period.  

Review the evaluation form that will be due on May 31st, following your implementation period.

Review the Grant Award Agreement.  You will be asked to attest to understanding these expectations if selected for funding.

Deadline to Apply:

Fall Grant Cycle:  September 6, 2021 - October 6, 2021
Deadline to apply is October 6, 2021 at 5pm MST

If your grant application is selected as a finalist, a 10-minute presentation will be required.


Lawren McConnell
Grants Manager
Phone:  505-880-3708