As educators, we spend much time reading and studying. We know reading is the foundation skill for learning. Perhaps in your classroom you have compiled many books to share with young learners that demonstrate the importance of reading. Sometimes we use bookends to support the series of books and make the book titles stand out. My sister knows my love for horses and gave to me a pair of glass horse bookends that I proudly use to support the many resource books I have on grants, RFPs and other funding sources. By positioning them on the opposite ends, this pair of supports enables my books to be easily accessible to me. Lately in my survey of grants, I am seeing the bookends of education quickly becoming a growing funding movement. The bookends of education are Early Learning and Workforce Development.
These opposite ends of the education continuum are the bookends of a student’s educational career. Beginning with preschool learning through college and career readiness, the bookends of education bring lifelong benefits to each student and level the learning field. As a result, the areas of early childhood learning and career and college readiness/workforce development are quickly rising as major areas for investment among federal, state, local, and private funders. A growing number of public and private funders are issuing calls to action and supporting efforts in the bookends by offering grant opportunities.
Between the bookends, and standing tall, is also an area of growing interest and increase funding – the Whole Learner. The bookends frame and support the efforts of social emotional learning, school culture and safety, personalized learning, and family engagement. These are just some of the many supports contributing to the success of the whole learner and appearing in many grant applications.
As the 2019-2020 school year approaches, consider how your school offers solutions to support the bookends of education. Perhaps you offer solutions to benefit the Whole Learner. Look to funding to support the continuum of learning. It is available, here and now!