This week, Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman announced that the Arizona Department of Education (ADE) would allocate $5 million in federal COVID-19 relief funds to help PreK-12th grade public school educators get classroom resources through DonorsChoose, a nonprofit crowdfunding platform. The collaboration between ADE and DonorsChoose will provide teachers with up to $600 in funding for their projects, empowering them to support student academic success with classroom resources. This money will fund projects for over 8,300 Arizona public school teachers.
Forty percent of the $5 million will be earmarked for teachers working in one of Arizona’s thirteen more rural counties, with sixty percent earmarked for educators working in Maricopa and Pima counties. Earlier this year, ADE partnered with DonorsChoose to allocate $14 million to 15,446 Arizona teachers at over 1,600 schools.
“After the last few deeply challenging school years, Arizona educators and students need all the support we can give them,” said Superintendent Hoffman. “After the overwhelmingly positive response from teachers and students to our first round of funding, it was an easy decision to allocate additional classroom funds to teachers as they begin the new school year. And with dedicated funds available to our state’s rural classrooms, we’re positive teachers and students in all corners of our state will benefit from this opportunity.”
“Donors Choose has made a significant impact for my students’ daily life in the classroom,” said 2nd year Paradise Valley Unified District teacher Grant Wood. “It’s inspiring having a classroom environment where students feel welcomed and comfortable because teachers are able to choose the right resources to meet their needs.”
“The Arizona Department of Education is once again giving teachers a boost of support as classrooms head into a new school year,” said Alix Guerrier, CEO of DonorsChoose. “This initiative will especially empower educators who need it most, and it will ensure that Arizona students have the extra resources they need this back-to-school season.”
All Arizona public school educators teaching Pre-K through 12th-grade students are eligible for this program. Educators can request classroom resources, including but not limited to supplies, technology, and instructional materials.
Since DonorsChoose was founded in 2000, more than 27,000 Arizona teachers representing school districts across the state have raised $41 million for projects that help them go above and beyond in the classroom. The continued collaboration between ADE and DonorsChoose will further this support for educators across Arizona.
ADE will begin funding eligible requests on a first-come, first-served basis beginning today, August 22, 2022, and for as long as funding is available. Educators can learn how to create an eligible DonorsChoose project by visiting www.azed.gov/teachergrants.