Frequently Asked Questions
If you are a self-contained classroom teacher who teaches mathematics and/or science, you are eligible for one QSM award in either the mathematics or science category in a given fiscal year.
I teach a STEM course—robotics, engineering, computer science—that is neither a designated mathematics nor science course. Should I apply?
Yes, if your proposal aligns with the Louisiana Science and Mathematics Standards, then you are eligible. In your proposal, make sure the materials/equipment you are requesting are directly aligned to either LSSS or LSSM.
The Goals and Objectives of your class must align with either:
- mathematical practices;
- science and engineering practices; or
- any other district or state course guidelines for:
- computer science; or
- STEM courses.
An ideal QSM grant proposal will:
- Provide a clear view of what the students will do with the materials during their classroom instruction.
- Provide a vision of how the students will use the materials in their activities rather than how you as the teacher will benefit.
- Link the supplies and activities to state standards.
- Explain students needs for improving and developing skills, understanding processes, and expanding knowledge as part of the plan for meeting your specified goals and objectives.
For the student population description, should/can I use general data about my school population if I don’t know specifics about my actual class?
Ideally, your proposal will describe your students as accurately as possible. However, if you don’t have any specific defining information, you may start with your school population data for demonstrating how students will benefit from the materials you are requesting.
Group submissions are not allowed and will be disqualified.
No. While multiple teachers within a school may request identical materials, each applicant must author a separate, unique proposal. Each teacher is allowed to submit one proposal for each grant round per fiscal year if they have not been awarded a grant in the same fiscal year.
Any of following actions will result in the disqualification of a submission:
- Missing or incomplete proposal component(s)
- Any mention of names, schools, parishes, districts, or towns within the responses to the proposal questions or budget file
- Failure to identify how QSM Ineligible Items required to complete the project successfully will be funded (only if necessary)
- Eligible items including more than 10% essential consumables, consumables not related to the project, or typical classroom supplies
- Failure to identify funding source for QSM Eligible Items budget if total exceeds award limitations (only if necessary)
- Violations of the state’s policy regarding use of confidential student data or implication of knowledge of the content of an assessment beyond what has been provided by the governing agency. For example, including student names on reports is a violation of student confidentiality laws. Inclusion of information that could only have been obtained by reviewing individual items on a state assessment is a violation of state policy.
- Evidence of plagiarism. This includes, but is not limited to the following:
- substituting synonyms for another individual’s words but preserving sentence structure
- mixing the individual’s words or phrases with the applicant’s paraphrasing, and,
- using the exact text that a company uses in their product descriptions.
The maximum award is $1,000 for PK-2nd grade proposals, $1,500 for 3rd-5th grade proposals, and $2,000 for 4th-12th grade proposals.
If you submit a budget for over this amount, the reviewer may disqualify your application if they deem that instructional goals and objectives cannot be met without the full list of materials. Please indicate clearly if your administrator administrator has agreed to supplement the difference of your total costs.
When I went to purchase the materials and they were on sale. How do I proceed? Do I need to return the money?
If your materials are available at a reduced price after you were awarded the grant, then you must contact the QSM Grant Administrator so you can discuss alternate options. Approval is needed before you may purchase either a larger quantity or an item(s) different than those listed in your original proposal.
If I transfer to another school and am teaching the same course, do the materials move with me or do these belong to my former school?
Materials purchased from QSM funds belong to the school. The principal may reassign the materials to another faculty member or permit the teacher to take the materials to their new teaching assignment if it is a public school.
While QSM funds can only be used to purchase non-consumables materials and equipment, learning kits/bundles that contain a few consumable items are allowed.
It is conceivable that I could repurpose the materials for multiple classroom activities, so should my proposal focus on a primary activity, or must I include all potential uses throughout the school year?
Your proposal should provide a clear picture of why you need the equipment and why you think it will benefit your students. For example, a calculator will have a use in multiple mathematics lessons.
First, provide a vision of how the equipment will meet several standards and prepare your students for problem solving. Focus on activities for one domain or module, while describing potential alternative use(s) that further justify your instructional needs and supports for benefiting your students.
No. Software licenses and news subscriptions are considered consumable since they are subscription based. One exception is perpetual-licensed software—once purchased, you may use indefinitely—that clearly aligns to standards-based student instruction and activities outlined in your proposal.
QSM funds are restricted to materials and equipment purposed for classroom instruction. Environmental science project proposals are acceptable when implemented as part of a specific course and if it aligns to the LSSS.
Award announcements are usually made 30 days following the application cycle deadline. Once you officially accept your award, we send checks to your school within 30 days.