SJRWMD Blue School Grant Program accepting applications

County teachers may apply for grants to teach about Florida water resources

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CLAY COUNTY – Now entering the fifth year of its Blue School Grant Program, the St. Johns River Water Management District anticipates offering as much as $20,000 in grants for education projects that enrich student knowledge of Florida’s water resources through hands-on learning. The application period runs June 1 through Sept. 4, giving teachers all summer to prepare their project proposals for the 2020–2021 grants.

An informational webinar on the grant application process will be held June 2 from 10–10:30 a.m. Register for the webinar at www.sjrwmd.com/education/blue-school.

“Even with distance learning and virtual classrooms in the mix, Blue School Grants are a great way for the district to partner with local schools on their science, technology, engineering and math [STEM] programs,” said St. Johns River Water Management District Executive Director Dr. Ann Shortelle. “We have funded 47 water resource education projects in the last four funding cycles, and I’m looking forward to another round of inspiring and imaginative project ideas.”

Through the district’s Blue School Grant Program, up to $2,000 a school may be awarded to middle and high school teachers to enhance student knowledge of Florida’s water resources. Public and charter school teachers within the district’s boundaries are eligible to apply.

Grants may be awarded in three areas: freshwater resources field study, water conserving landscape projects, or water conservation community/school awareness campaigns.

Due to COVID-19, there is flexibility, with appropriate communication with the district, about changes in needs due to uncertain nature of school formats for the 2020–2021 school year.

Examples of previous successful grant applications include:

• Service-learning projects where middle and high school students partnered to study water quality

• Creation of native landscape garden with educational signage

• Water quality comparison of stormwater ponds on campus

• Conversion of traditional irrigation to micro-irrigation in school landscape

• Water conservation awareness posters and video

• Teachers receiving grants will be notified on Oct. 1.

Information about criteria and deadlines and the online application can be found at www.sjrwmd.com/education/blueschool or contact Dr. Jennifer Mitchell at jmitchell@sjrwmd.com or (904) 730-6283.

Learn more about district professionals in STEM visit https://www.sjrwmd.com/education/stem/staff/.

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