Overview:

The Education Gap Grant for Early Childhood Educators offers grant funds to early childhood educators who are seeking additional early childhood education credentials and need a small amount of funding to fill a financial “gap” to reach their goal. Early childhood educators may request up to $1000 to address a financial barrier to continuing education. Launched in November 2022, this program is generously funded by an anonymous donor.

Eligibility:

Applicants must be currently working in a Child Development Division-regulated early childhood education center-based program, family child care home, and/or public preschool program serving children between the ages of 0 and 5. Applicants must also have a financial need that prohibits them from continuing their education.

How to Apply:

Applications for the Education Gap Grant are accepted year-round. Applications can be downloaded by clicking the button below. Completed applications should be submitted by email to pdsupports@vtaeyc.org.

Please fill out the application completely and include all required information. After you apply, your application will be reviewed by the VTAEYC review committee. You may receive a request for more information, documentation, or clarification; please respond in a timely fashion. VTAEYC will send notification of the decision by email within four weeks of receiving a completed application.

For More Information:

The Grant Guidelines will provide additional information and should be read through before completing an application. Please see below for some answers to frequently asked questions. If you have any additional questions about the Education Gap Grant for Early Childhood Educators, please email pdsupports@vtaeyc.org.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Can I use this grant to cover the cost of my annual professional development?

No, the Education Gap Grant is not intended to fund annual professional development training hours. It is intended to address gaps in funding that allow individual early childhood educators to earn specific post-secondary degrees and credentials.

Do I have to be a Vermont resident to apply for Gap Program funds?

No, you do not have to be a Vermont resident, but you must be working in a regulated Vermont program.

I know the Grant Guidelines require that I apply for other funding sources; where can I find other funding options?

Can this program be combined with other financial aid?

Yes, the expectation is that an applicant will have sought out other sources of financial aid. If available financial aid doesn’t cover the full cost of tuition and fees, the applicant should submit tuition statements showing other financial aid and the remaining need.

Can this funding be used for multiple barriers?

Yes, this funding can be used for multiple barriers at once but the total request may not exceed $1000. For example, if an applicant wanted to apply to cover the cost of books, a parking pass, and other fees to a higher education institution that would be allowable.

What early childhood education credentials are supported by the Education Gap Grant?

This grant is designed to support individuals taking steps to earn a higher education degree or a credential on the Early Childhood Career Ladder and/or obtaining a Program Director Credential. For more information, please visit https://northernlightsccv.org/career-development/early-childhood-career-ladder/.

Do I need to show receipts?

Awardees are required to complete a funding report after funds are expended.  This report will ask you to submit documentation that the funds were spent for the reason that they were awarded. We ask that you save your receipts as proof of documentation.

Can I apply for the Education Gap Grant funds more than once?

At this time, it is a one-time grant. Should the program continue beyond one year, we anticipate that early childhood educators would apply once per year as long as you still have a qualifying need.