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Louis Calder Foundation Grant

Louis Calder Foundation

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Deadline: Rolling

Grant amount: US $20,000 - US $500,000

Fields of work: Education System Policy & Reform Education - K through 12 Teacher Development & Training

Applicant type: Nonprofit

Funding uses: Project / Program, Education / Outreach, Research

Location of project: United States

Location of residency: United States

990 Snapshot



NOTE: The Louis Calder Foundation is temporarily suspending acceptance of unsolicited proposals and letters of inquiry as we focus on our current portfolio to understand their changing and potential future needs as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Please note The Foundation’s fiscal year end is October 31. There is no specific time frame in which to submit a letter of inquiry.

Our Approach

The program focus of the Louis Calder Foundation is education reform. We support academic programs throughout the country that offer families alternatives to under-performing public schools. We believe that charter and parochial schools have produced meaningful results over time by emphasizing academic achievement as their primary focus and utilizing a content-rich, traditional liberal arts curriculum. We believe that a quality education depends on 1) what is taught, 2) how it is taught, and 3) when it is taught, and that these alternative school models understand how all three requirements intersect in research and in practice.

What is taught

We believe that a quality education builds upon a uniform base of knowledge, a common curriculum that provides a rich and relevant context for learning and skill acquisition. A traditional liberal arts education offers a bond of common knowledge to students who graduate as culturally literate, college-ready individuals.

How it is taught

We support CMOs and parochial schools that establish rigorous standards of academic achievement, allocate more classroom hours, and promote social values, student outcomes, and character development. Improving teacher performance is also critical as schools need exceptional teachers who have mastered curriculum content and can illustrate by example that character strengths such as leadership, commitment, and perseverance are major predictors of success.

When it is taught

Research shows that children learn best when content is delivered in a coherent sequence where knowledge builds comprehensively as children advance by grade. An age-appropriate curriculum, rich in language and literature, history, science, and geography, maximizes learning, knowledge retention, and the development of strong reasoning skills.

Our mission is to support high-performing alternate education models in anticipation that their successful strategies will become common practice in all schools.

Current Strategies

The Louis Calder Foundation currently utilizes four strategies to support its overall grant-making program.

Charter and Parochial Schools

A significant grant-making strategy for The Foundation is supporting the expansion efforts of high-performing CMOs and faith-based schools as well as supporting the creation of new schools.

Teacher and Leadership Development

The Foundation supports innovative programs that identify and nurture the qualities of highly effective teachers and leaders.

Public Policy

The Foundation supports organizations that advocate for education reform through policy research and analysis of current educational issues.

Grant Size

The Foundation awards grants of varying sizes depending on the specific project being funded. The average grant size is $100,000.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • In order to submit a letter of inquiry an organization must be a non-profit 501(c)3 organization. 
  • The Foundation accepts letters of inquiry from organizations in the continental United States.


  • Grants are not made to individuals, private foundations, governmental organizations or publicly operated educational institutions.
  • The Foundation generally does not provide support to annual funds or special events. 
  • The Foundation does not provide long term continuing program support and requests for renewed support are considered on the basis of reports received, site visits and Foundation priorities. 
  • The Foundation does not support the purchase of computer or other technology equipment.


This page was last reviewed May 11, 2021 and last updated May 04, 2021