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Partner Schools Program

Grants to Iowa K-12 Educators for Space Exploration
Conference Participation to Promote STEM Learning

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Iowa Space Grant Consortium (ISGC)

Deadline Date:

12/03/18 3:00 PM Receipt


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Grants to Iowa K-12 educators for attendance at a space exploration conference for pre-college educators. Funding is intended to promote space-related classroom instruction by supporting the professional enrichment of individuals or educator teams involved in STEM Education. These may include teachers, science museum staff, higher education science faculty, and 4-H educators.

The Iowa Space Grant Consortium (ISGC) sponsors Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) school partnerships to help connect schools to learning opportunities that move the NASA mission forward and increase awareness of STEM careers, especially at NASA. The Partner Schools Program is an ISGC Precollege Program that provides support for educator-teams and preservice STEM educators to attend exciting professional development (PD) to bring their experiences back to their classrooms, schools, and colleagues. The 2019 Partner Schools Program will provide funding to attend the Space Exploration Educator’s Conference (SEEC) at Space Center Houston and NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. The conference will be February 7-9, 2019. Travel to Houston will be on February 6 with return on February 10 (based on flight availability).

The Space Exploration Educators Conference: The ISGC Academy is for grades kindergarten to 12th – and not just for science teachers. Space Center Houston strives to use space to teach across the curriculum. The activities presented can be used for science, language arts, mathematics, history, and more.

The ISGC will provide each participant with round-trip airfare, lodging, admission fees, and transportation for the duration of the conference.

Precollege (K-12 Educators) - Goals:

- To engage more pre-college organizations in the statewide Partner Schools program
- To ensure sustained Iowa representation in the American Junior Academy of Science through the Iowa Academy of Science
- To conduct statewide STEM professional development, pre-service and in-service training for formal and non-formal educators working in K-12 schools who use NASA content

Applications will be reviewed with selections based on the following criteria:

- Application completed accurately and submitted by deadline
- Essay response
- Need
- Partnering plan
- Budget match (can be in-kind)

The ISGC will consider the following on applications:

- Ability to communicate understanding and commitment to the conference goals:

(1) To provide educators with the background and experience that will add to their knowledge base as an educator.
2) To make connections between space science and school curriculum that will allow educators to enhance their instruction.
3) To create a network of educators within the State of Iowa to act as space science resources for the STEM education community

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 184572

Number of Grants:

The ISGC anticipates awards for eight teachers.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Applicant requirements:

- U.S. Citizen of the United States
- Employed in the State of Iowa as a K-12 educator*
- One year of experience in education*
- Employer agreement with support of Partner Schools requirements*

*Not applicable to preservice educators


Applicants that are in-service must apply in teams of at least two with a minimum of one educator teaching K-12 STEM. These partners may be teachers from the same district or others working in STEM education (i.e. 4-H educators, science museum staff, higher education science education faculty, or other creative partners) that will improve STEM learning.

Preservice educators may apply as part of a team or individually. The applicants agree to conduct inservice training for their district as well as other educators from their area if any are interested in NASA educational materials and career information acquired at the SEEC. The district must agree to these stipulations, as well as provide time for the in-service.

Pre-Application Information:

All applications must be received by 3:00 p.m. Friday, December 3, 2018. Notifications will sent by December 21, 2018.

Preservice and In-Service Educators may apply in accordance with the appropriate application process. (See Preservice / In-Service Educator "Application Process and Essays" in the Application Packet pdf listed below in Supporting Documents.)

Applications may be emailed or mailed (see Contact Information below).

The ISGC will provide for registration and will cover part of the travel and other expenses for each participant in the Space Exploration Educator’s Conference (SEEC).

All Partner School Teachers will be expected to participate in The ISGC Academy and provide two or more PD sessions for colleagues related to their sponsored experiences. (The ISGC Academy is the set of learning experiences conducted by Partners sharing their STEM-related learning to educators, students, and the public.) Participation can include providing teacher and student activities, hosting a NASA event, or other appropriate activities in Iowa. The ISGC Academy can be face-to-face or an on-line resource for educators, students, and the public. Presentations at professional meetings, in-district workshops, AEA courses, student events, and teacher/student workshops are a few suggested venues to fulfill this requirement.

All K-12 educators that apply to the Space Exploration Educator’s Conference (SEEC) will be expected to apply for the Spaceflight Operations Workshop (SOW). The Spaceflight Operations Workshop (SOW) takes place in early August each year and is open to various undergraduate students at Iowa State and other institutions through an application process. The 2019 week-long workshop will be held at Iowa State University and is tentatively scheduled for August 2-12. The program will immerse participants in a series of experiences and classroom activities that are a microcosm of the training NASA astronauts undergo to develop “operational thinking” necessary for space exploration. Participants learn to scuba dive and will receive scuba certification from the workshop. Also included are skydiving and wilderness training experiences. (The workshop has a lab fee (approximately $450) that is paid by participants, but is less than the cost of the scuba certification alone.) Information about applying for the 2019 workshop will be available in late 2018/early 2019.

For additional information about the SEEC:

For more information about the Spaceflight Operations Workshop:

For an overview of the Spaceflight Operations Workshop:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

To submit the application, email to:

or mail to:

Jay Staker, Associate Director, ISGC
Iowa State University, Aerospace Engineering
1234 Howe Hall, 537 Bissell Road
Ames, IA 50011-1096

Direct questions to:

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Iowa