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America's Farmers Grow Rural Education

Grants to USA School Districts in Eligible
Rural Counties for STEM Education Programs

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Monsanto Fund

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

04/02/18 5:00 PM CT Receipt


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Grants of $10,000 and $25,000 to USA public K-12 school districts in eligible rural counties for new and existing STEM programs. Applicants must be nominated by local farmers to participate. February 22, March 12, and April 4, 2018 are the dates of information sessions (new and prospective applicants are encouraged to attend one of these sessions).

Programs should focus on increasing interest or improving learning and instruction in science and/or math for the following school year. The Monsanto Fund seeks to help farmers positively impact their communities by supporting their local school districts.

School districts may apply for either a $10,000 grant or a $25,000 grant. Districts that apply for a $10,000 grant will compete only with eligible school districts in their Crop Reporting District (which includes only neighboring counties). School districts that apply for a $25,000 grant will compete with eligible school districts from the entire state or region. See a list of eligible counties in the Official Rules (link in Pre-Application Information below).

The types of projects are essentially the same for both grant levels, and both must enhance education in the areas of math and/or science in the next school year. An example of a $10,000 grant could include enrichment activities such as academic competitions and science fairs. For the $25,000 grant, the Monsanto Fund encourages the school district to submit projects that have a broader and more long-term impact on the school district population and a plan to sustain the project at the conclusion of the grant.

Projects may focus on science, technology, engineering and/or math. School districts are encouraged to apply for projects that meet the individual needs of the district for its students. The range of projects funded each year is broad and examples include, but aren’t limited to, starting or renovating greenhouses or school gardens, creating makerspaces, purchasing technology for math or science classrooms, and updating science lab equipment.

New and existing programs are eligible. If it is an existing program, applicants will be asked to describe current successes, how it was previously funded, and why funding is needed from the Monsanto Fund now.

Additional notes:

- Up to 10% of the requested grant amount can be used for overhead costs.
- Funds can be used for staff salaries. If additional staff members (part-time special instructors, trainers, etc.) are needed to deliver the proposed program, the Monsanto Fund grant can be used to pay for those salaries. It is not intended to cover already budgeted salaries of existing teachers and staff.

Evaluation Criteria:

Grant applications will be reviewed and assessed based on merit, need and community support. The merit component of the score will be based on the overall impact of the school district’s proposed use of the grant, the need component of the score will be based on the school district’s and community’s current financial status and the need for additional funding, and the community support component of the score will be based on the number of Eligible Farmers who nominate a school district. The more Eligible Farmers to nominate a school district, the more it demonstrates community support and can help strengthen its application.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 178842

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Grants are for either $10,000 or $25,000.

Term of Contract:

Grants awarded during the 2018 program should be expended during the 2018-2019 school year.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

To participate, the following criteria must be met.

County Eligibility – Eligible Counties meet one of the following criteria:

- A total of either: (i) 30,000 acres of corn, soybeans and/or cotton, and/or (ii) 30,000 acres of vegetables (defined as one or more of the following: pepper; tomato; onion; broccoli; cucumber; melons; watermelons; spinach; squash; pumpkin; sweet corn; lettuce; peas; and garden beans), are planted per calendar year within the boundaries of the county. Planted acreage is based on the January 2017 U.S.D.A Crop Production Report for 2016 State acres as received from Farm Service Agency (FSA) data with estimated county level acreage; or
- The county was determined to be an Eligible or Designated County under the Program in a prior year. Eligible counties are listed in the Official Rules; see the link in Pre-Application Information for details.

General County – A General County is any county with a public school district that does not qualify as a Designated County.

Farmer Eligibility – An Eligible Farmer must: 1) be 21 years of age or older at time of nomination, and 2) be actively engaged in farming a minimum of 250 acres of any crop. A farmer is “actively engaged in farming” if he or she performs the work on the farm, or hires and actively manages others who do so.

Eligible School Districts – In order to be eligible to receive a grant under this Program a school district must be considered a public school district by the National Center For Education Statistics (NCES). Public charter schools are eligible if they are considered public by NCES (National Center for Education Statistics).

Please note: Grant applications must be submitted by the school district; individual schools may not apply.

Individuals Not Eligible to Participate – The following individuals are not eligible to participate in the Program: (i) officers, directors, and employees of Monsanto Fund (the “Sponsor”), or of any of its representatives or advertising/promotion agencies, or any of their spouses, children, or household members; (ii) officers, directors and employees, of Monsanto Company, or of any of its subsidiaries or affiliates, or any of their spouses, children, or household members; and (iii) officers, directors and employees of any seed dealer, or any of their spouses, children, or household members.

Pre-proposal Conference:

The Monsanto Fund is hosting three one-hour conference calls to give grant seekers an opportunity to have their questions answered. New and prospective grantees are encouraged to participate. All participants should preview the application and frequently asked questions on this site prior to the call.

You will need to register prior to joining one of the calls. The link to register for one of the conference calls will be posted at the beginning of the 2018 program (see Contact Information).

Once you register, you will receive the dial-in number and the Conference ID Number, which you will need for the call. It is suggested that you call 15 minutes in advance of the scheduled start time to avoid long wait times for check-in.

Once you have joined the call, please identify yourself by giving your first and last names, organization, city and state.

Information Sessions will take place on:

Thursday, February 22, 2018
2:30 – 3:30 PM Central Time

Monday, March 12, 2018
8:00 – 9:00 AM Central Time

Wednesday, April 4, 2018
3:00 – 4:00 PM Central Time

Pre-Application Information:

The America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education (the “Program”) Program Entry Period is as follows:

- Nominations from Eligible Farmers must be received between 10:00 AM Central Time on January 1, 2018 and 5:00 PM Central Time on April 2, 2018.
- Entries from Eligible School Districts must be received between 10:00 AM Central Time on January 1, 2018 and 11:59 PM Central Time on April 15, 2018.

It is strongly recommended that you review the application and ask program-related questions well in advance of the deadline. Application questions will be answered within two business days.

After a school district receives its first nomination, the Monsanto Fund will notify the district and encourage them to design a project for the grant that enhances math and/or science education in their district. School districts are responsible for submitting a grant application describing their project, due by April 15, 2018 at 11:59 PM CT.

Eligible grant applications received during the Program Entry Period will be reviewed and scored by a panel of math and/or science teachers. The highest scoring grants in each CRD, state and/or region, as applicable, will become Program finalists. Each application that becomes a finalist will be reviewed by a panel of farmers who will determine the winners based on their review. Winners will be announced by August 15, 2018. Winners will be notified by phone and/or e-mail in August 2018.

No school district may win more than one grant per year under the Program and no Eligible Farmer may enter in more than one Eligible County.

Please note: If adequate or acceptable qualifying entries are not received in a CRD, state or designated region the Sponsor reserves the right to redistribute the funds to qualifying and acceptable entries.

School districts are encouraged to reach out to local farmers directly to invite them to nominate. Promotional materials to help school districts spread the word can be found here:

School districts may check to see if they have been nominated here:


Official Rules:

Selection Process:

Preview the application here:

Contact Information:

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

The link to register for one of the conference calls will be posted at the beginning of the 2018 program.

Program-related questions can be emailed to

There are three ways to nominate a school:

- Farmers can nominate online at the bottom of the RFP URL below.
- Eligible Farmers may nominate a school for the Program by mail, by either signing and returning a business reply card or returning an entry postcard. Once completed, mail to:
America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education
622 Emerson Rd, Ste 150
St. Louis, MO 63141-9586
- Eligible farmers may enter the Program by phone, call 1-877-267-3332 and answer all required registration information questions during the Program Entry Period.

Nominated schools apply online here:

To obtain a copy of the Official Rules or a list of the winners, send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education Official Rules, 800 North Lindbergh Blvd. B2NA St. Louis, Missouri 63167.

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maryland;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming