ABOUT THE $1 MILLION FUND
How did this opportunity become possible? This fund has been an accumulation of unrestricted donations from donors who trust us to determine the best use of their donations. Fueled by the generosity of our donors, this funding opportunity is possible. This fund encompasses what the DPS Foundation stands for— together and with the support of our donors, our students and our city will thrive. Whether you give $10, $100, $1,000 and beyond—every single dollar is crucial in making this $1 Million Fund a reality for our schools. We must all work together to ensure every student graduates ready to lead a successful life.
Why? Because our hardworking educators deserve the space and financial support to foster collaborative solutions for our students, helping them to become the next great leaders of Denver! Through this opportunity, the DPS Foundation is partnering with Denver Public Schools to combine the financial resources of the Denver community with the expertise and support of the district. We seek to empower students, teachers, leaders, families, community stakeholders and staff – those who deeply understand the needs of our students best – to design and launch creative and innovative solutions that address and mitigate historical inequities that persist in our communities. The $1 Million Fund will support the selected DPS schools in planning and implementing creative and collaborative solutions to address challenges, build capacity, and enrich school communities.
Who will be eligible to apply? Any family of DPS schools. Yes, this includes district-run schools, charter schools, innovation schools, and network of schools!
What principles have guided us for the $1 Million Fund?
- We are committed to the tremendous responsibility that our donors entrusted us with determining the best use of their funds.
- We will be nimble in our approach and offer a process that is systematic yet simple.
- We believe in the ability of our schools to learn from successes and failures and we are willing to take calculated risks with this funding.
- We believe our schools understand their needs best, and should have the flexibility in funding to implement their ideas.
- We believe that the support and buy-in from the community is paramount in successful implementation, and the ability to leverage resources.
- We will align our work with cornerstones of DPS – equity, collaborative teamwork, and academic excellence.
Areas of focus:
- Advance educator mindsets to increase high expectations and student agency, particularly in the areas of mathematics and early literacy. This may include, but is not limited to, a focus on culturally responsive education, quality instruction, and/or efforts to ensure equitable practices.
- Grow student mindsets to allow them to envision a successful future and recognize their potential impact on the world. This may include ideas that increase student readiness for graduation requirements and/or exposure to post-secondary experiences.
- Strengthen family and community mindsets regarding the role they can play in their students’ educational experiences. This may include family and community engagement efforts aligned with the Aspen Ascend Framework, addressing the needs of both children and the adults in their lives.
- Build the capacity of educators to support the emotional and physical development of students by providing training and resources in areas such as social emotional learning, mental health, inclusive practices, restorative justice, specially designed instruction, and trauma-informed practices.
- Other: Have an idea that does not seem to fit into one of the above categories? We want to hear your innovative, inspiring thoughts. Please apply.
Intent to Apply
Once the grant recipients are announced, the fun will just be getting started! We will continuously share out stories of impact, with each success story being made possible thanks to our donors. We can’t wait to see the #1MillionOpportunities these grants will make in our schools.
We will be releasing information on the selection committee in January.