Tuesday, January 26, 1999
2nd Year of Grant Program, Jobs Commission Expects 1,000 Applications The Michigan Jobs Commission announced today that applications will be available on-line starting Monday, February 1, for the NextDay Teacher Innovation Grant program. The initiative, which the Governor announced last winter as part of his $30 million plan to advance the use of technology in schools, is designed to target resources directly to teachers who use technology in the classroom. The grants range in amount up to $10,000 and provide resources directly to the classroom the 'NextDay' so that information technology can impact student success. "Our goal in creating the NextDay program was to make sure that computers weren't just in every classroom, but that students were actually learning to use them," said Doug Rothwell, CEO and department director of the Michigan Jobs Commission. "This program has and will continue to make sure that teachers have the tools they need to provide our students with a first-class education, so that they will be able to compete well into the 21st century." Last year 118 teachers received grants totaling more than $600,000. The entire NextDay initiative was conducted online, making it the first grant program in the nation to be managed solely via the Internet, from start to finish. Approximately 400 applicants e-mailed proposals, they were reviewed and scored online, and the Governor notified winners in an e-mail message. This year, Trico Associates, of Plymouth and the Michigan Association of Computer-related technology Users in Learning (MACUL) will assist the Michigan Jobs Commission in management of the program. "The response we received from the education community in the first year was tremendous, and this year we expect to get an even greater response from teachers. In fact we anticipate that we will receive well in an excess of a thousand proposals," continued Rothwell. Again this year, winners will be invited to attend the Michigan Educational Technology Leadership Institute at Michigan State University in August. In order to assist applicants, a grant writing teleconference will be presented via video at up to 15 sites around the state. During that time, a detailed review of the application will be presented and time for question and answers will be scheduled. The teleconference is tentatively scheduled for late February. As details are finalized, additional information will be made available on the website. The Michigan Jobs Commission, which administers the NextDay Innovation Grants, works to continuously upgrade the skills of Michigan workers and match workers with job opportunities. The grant applications and information about the program will be available at http://www.trico-associates.com/nextday or by contacting the Michigan Jobs Commission's Customer Assistance line at (517)373-9808. The deadline for applications is April 15, 1999.