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Awards and Grants

The AEA Foundation for Teaching & Learning supports teaching and learning in Arizona with student scholarships, professional development opportunities and grants for innovative classroom projects. Since 1997, the Foundation has awarded more than $900,000 to students, teachers, and education support professionals.

The AEA Foundation has made a difference in many careers and classrooms. The Nell Wilcoxen / AEA Future Educator Scholarship provides college scholarships for those entering the teaching profession. The LIFT and Promise Grants provide funding for classroom programs and projects. The Allen W. Sayler Memorial Fund supports the arts. The AEA Development Fund defrays expenses for teachers who seek National Board Certification. The Mary Kay Haviland Angel Fund provides direct assistance to individual students with educational or personal needs. The AEA Foundation Brochure offers an overview of each award and grant.


National Board Certification Scholarship
The AEA Teacher Development Fund offers scholarships to teaching professionals who pursue National Board Certification, the highest professional achievement in teaching.  Applicants are encouraged to utilize all available financial resources to offset their National Board Certification fees.  Application.

Mary Kay Haviland Angel Fund
This grant allows education professionals to provide direct assistance to students with educational or personal needs.  Application.

Professional Development Grant
This grant offers funding to any full-time teacher or education support professional to further their profession through leadership development, craft and skill improvement, or collaborative learning with colleagues.  Grants will be awarded in amounts up to $650.  Application.

Allen W. Sayler Fine Arts Grant
This grant offers scholarships to develop an appreciation of fine arts and to enrich the lives of children by seeking way to support students in music, drama, dance and art.  Application.

Diversity Grant

The AEA Diversity Grant is given to develop or pursue instructional programs or curriculum that promote diversity, tolerance, and respect for humankind.  Application.

Gay-Straight Alliance Encouragement Grant
The Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) Encouragement Grant offers opportunities for Gay-Straight Alliances in Arizona to pursue their mission of improving the school climate for all students, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression.  Application.

LIFT Grant
AEA Learning Improvement through Faculty Team(LIFT) Grants are given for the purpose of enhancing student learning through the collaboration of faculty, who may include support professionals.  Application.

Promise Grants
Promise Mini-Grants support members' small projects that are in the spirit of AEA's mission - "Keeping the promise of quality public education" - and address one of AEA's Strategic Objectives: Quality Teaching & Learning, Community Engagement, and Organizational Development with Site Focus.  Application.

Nell Wilcoxen Future Educator Scholarship Grant
This scholarship helps defray tuition and registration costs for AEA members or members of their families who want to pursue a teaching career.  Application.

McAuliffe "I Touch the Future, I Teach" Award
This annual award recognizes an educator who inspires his or her peers and makes them proud to be a teacher. Named for Christa McAuliffe, the first American civilian—and teacher—in space, this award honors an Arizona educator. The recipient is awarded $1,000 and becomes AEA's entrant in the NEA Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence competition.  Application.

ESPecially for Kids Award
This award recognizes extraordinary efforts by classified education support professionals on behalf of public education. The recipient is awarded $1,000.  Application.

Human and Civil Rights Award
This award recognizes leadership in promoting ethnic minority participation in the Association, programs or activities that lead to improved human relations, efforts that lead to improvement in school district support of human and civil rights, or successful implementation of human and civil rights in Arizona education.  The recipient is awarded $1,000.  Application.

Diversity Award
The AEA Diversity Award recognizes excellence in teaching or promoting diversity, tolerance, and respect for humankind through an instructional program or curriculum.  Application.

Affirmative Action Award
The AEA Affirmative Action Award honors leadership in increasing the number of ethnic-minority students choosing to enter teaching, efforts that improve school-district hiring practices and increased minority employment, and successful implementation of affirmative action policies within school districts.  Application.

Public Relations Partner Award
This award honors an exceptional school public relations person who has demonstrated a strong relationship between the district, the local association, and the community and whose efforts have improved the public's understanding about public schools.  Application.

Presidential Award for Excellence in Education News Coverage
This award recognizes print, radio, and television reporters for exceptional work in covering education issues and events.  Application.

Partners in Education Award
This award honors those who support neighborhood schools. The award honors corporations, local businesses, individuals, or community groups that exhibit exemplary support for local public schools.  Application.

School Bell Awards
This award honors local association newsletter editors and other communications projects for excellence.  Application.

The deadline for all awards, except the School Bell Awards, is 5 p.m. on March 1. If you have difficulty downloading an application, please contact Chris Mayer at (602) 264-1774 or (800) 352-5411, ext. 143.



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