Saint Louis University

Charter School Sponsorship Faculty Grant Program

Background
Saint Louis University has an extensive history of collaboration with St. Louis' public schools and continually seeks to assist the St. Louis Public School District, neighboring public school districts, the City of St. Louis and the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education as appropriate to advance student learning. Toward that goal, the University has committed to sponsorship of public charter schools. Currently the University sponsors two charter schools: City Garden Montessori Charter School and Grand Center Arts Academy. Information about each school can be found here.

Program Description
The purpose of the Charter School Sponsorship Faculty Grant Program is to provide the opportunity for faculty to conduct research to further scholarship, professional practice, or policy in the field of public education, with a particular emphasis on charter schools or SLU's sponsored charter schools.

Eligibility
All full-time tenured, tenure-track, and non-tenure-track faculty members with active research programs are eligible to apply. Proposals must be approved by the chair of the applicant's department and their dean/director; applicants are therefore strongly encouraged to consult with their unit administrators before developing proposals. While it is anticipated that most applications will be from individual faculty members, joint proposals - particularly those engaging faculty from different departments/colleges/schools - will also be considered and are encouraged.

Anticipated Time Commitment
Each grant will be awarded for a period of one academic term (typically the fall or spring semester), although longer-term projects may be considered; awards extending into a summer term (for analysis of data collected during the school year, for example) may be considered. The research period should generally coincide with the start and end dates of the award term. Workload for the research is expected to be equivalent to teaching one three credit academic course (see Budget section below).

Proposal Requirements
Grant proposals should be no more than 10 pages long and should include the following elements:

1. Cover page with name, title, academic unit and contact information.
2. The research problem/question to be addressed.
3. An explanation of the importance of the research activity within the field of public education.
4. An explanation of the research design or methodology.
5. Specific objectives and anticipated outcomes, both short and long-term.
6. A description of the research-specific qualifications of the researcher(s).
7. Letter of support from chair and dean/director.

Selection Criteria
The following criteria will guide the selection of proposals: (1) potential impact on the community, (2) the likelihood that the proposed project will make an important scholarly contribution, (3) an applicant's demonstrated expertise, and (4) a feasible work plan, (5) the support of faculty and staff of the school, (6) the availability of the school's students, faculty and staff as needed.

Budget/Funding
Awardees will be granted a release from three credit hours of teaching in each academic term in which the grant is awarded. Funding will be provided by the Office of Charter School Sponsorship to the awardee's academic unit equal to the amount of a) the salary and fringe benefits (if any) of an adjunct faculty member or b) a standard course overload stipend during each award term (typically $3,500 per course). In lieu of direct compensation, applicants who are granted awards for research into a summer term or who serve in an administrative capacity will receive an equivalent amount of funding for the faculty member's travel or professional development account. Awards for research projects requiring IRB approval will only be disbursed following submission of IRB approval documentation to the Office of Charter School Sponsorship.

Regardless of the grant term, it is expected that the awardee's department will continue to fully support the faculty member for office space, copying, telephone, postage, office supplies, software, database searches, and other like expenses. Special requests for any additional, research-related funding should be included as part of the proposal.

Awardee's Accountability
Within one month of the end of the award term, the awardee must submit a full report addressing the research conducted, research objectives met, publication results, etc. to the Director of Charter School Sponsorship. The awardee is responsible for completing all of the short-term objectives specified in the proposal by the end of the grant. Any requests for extensions to complete short-term objectives must be approved by the Director of Charter School Sponsorship before the grant period has expired. Awardees should report additional outcomes resulting from the grant to the Director of Charter School Sponsorship if they occur after the progress report has been submitted.

Application Timeline
Proposals are accepted on a year-round basis. However, applicants should plan their proposal submissions with their supervisors well in advance of the proposed grant term; the ability of the awardee's academic unit to cover the course release specified above will impact award decisions.

How to Apply
Submit proposals electronically (preferably in a Word or PDF file) to Martha McGeehon, Director of Charter School Sponsorship, at mmcgeeho@slu.edu For further information, call (314) 977-2232.

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