Grants are open to any teacher, staff member or administrator in Durango School District 9-R. They are also open to other non-profit organizations with programs that serve the students in Durango 9-R. Grants are intended to assist educators in serving students of all ages, abilities, and academic interest areas.

In giving every application close scrutiny, we consider faculty and district input, educational research, inter- and intra-school collaboration, donor preference, alignment with the Durango 9-R Strategic Plan, and the reviewing committee members’ own experience. It’s an exciting process, one that gives D.E.F. great insight into the vision our teachers and administrators hold for our schools.

Please review the criteria and information for each type of grant, then submit a Letter of Inquiry (LOI) if your idea aligns with one of our grants funds.


At the beginning of 2019, DEF introduced two funding cycles: Fall and Spring; and a new three-step process to apply for one of our four grant types.  The three-step process includes a Letter of Inquiry, Grant Application, and Post-Grant Evaluation.

As we align with curriuclar changes occurring within School District 9-R, we are focusing more on innovation in relation to performance indicators as set within each school.  We define innovation as providing a new and/or different perspective about how educators’ teach and students’ learn in regards to the resources and opportunities funded outside a regular school budget. 

We are working diligently to make our application process as seamless and simple as possible.  Changes to our application includes a fully automated system for electronic-only submissions and a ONE step submission process.  Applicants will no longer be required to submit their application to both School District 9-R and DEF.  We will do the work for you! Applicants will now submit through the DEF Application Process, in which your application will be pushed to the appropriate 9-R departments by DEF.

Our Fall Cycle will take place from the 2nd Monday of September to the Friday before 9-R Thanksgiving Break, and funds grants intended to be implemented in Winter and Spring.  The Spring Cycle occurs March 1 – May 10 for Summer and Fall funding.


Areas We Fund:

  • Classroom needs not funded by the 9-R District budget
  • Academic Programs: pilot, innovative, collaborative, and/or regular ongoing
  • Programs to build or reward character, improve study habits, or encourage academic proficiency
  • Education in Visual and/or Performing Arts
  • Professional development expenses that are a part of a larger grant proposal
  • Programs offered by community organizations serving 9-R students

Areas That Will Not Be Awarded:

  • Staff, substitute a administrative salaries
  • Professional development expenses, unless a part of a larger grant proposal
  • Items adequately funded, or planned to be funded, in the 9-R District budget
  • Athletics (e.g. programs, travel, facilities, or equipment)