For information on MDE-LIO's scholarships, visit the Scholarships page.
Mini-grants are available for districts in Michigan that offer programs and events for students who are Blind/Visually Impaired. If a mini-grant is awarded, MDE-LIO will provide funding after the program ends.
A district program is eligible for a mini-grant if it includes students who:
Meet the definition of having a visual impairment, including DeafBlindness, as defined in the Michigan Administrative Rules for Special Education [PDF]:
R 340.1708 Visual impairment explained; determination
R 340.1717 DeafBlindness defined; determination
Are eligible for financial need, as demonstrated by a Bridge Card or formal documentation from the school confirming the student receives free or reduced meals
The maximum funding amount for which a district may request reimbursement is $2,000 per fiscal year (October 1 - September 30). Each district is allowed one mini-grant per fiscal year. A request may be split between multiple teachers. Grants are awarded on a first come, first served basis.
How to Apply
Complete and submit a Mini-Grant Application Form [PDF] at least three weeks prior to the program. This gives MDE-LIO time to approve or deny the application before the program begins.
Please include all of the following:
- Description of the program or service, including expected outcomes.
- Detailed budget, outlining expected activities that will be covered by the mini-grant (e.g., supplies, materials, travel, personnel costs).
- Name and Unique Identification Code (UIC) for each student who will be served.
- Proof of financial need:
- Copy of each student’s Bridge Card.
- Formal documentation from the school confirming the student receives free or reduced meals.
- Detailed budget, outlining the activities that will be covered by the mini-grant (e.g., supplies, materials, travel, personnel costs).
- MDE-LIO reviews and scores applications as they are received.
- Applicants are notified of a decision within six weeks of receiving the application.
Implement the Program
- Provide the program as specified in your grant application.
- Pay all expenses up-front and keep all itemized receipts for reimbursement.
A clear implementation plan must be included with the application. Proposals should include:
- Established best practices or innovative ideas.
- Research and data to support the effectiveness of the implementation plan and practices.
Applications must include the expected outcomes of the program. Outcomes must:
- Positively impact the students and families.
- Meet a documented need for students.
- Help students access the general education curriculum or achieve goals in the expanded core curriculum.
MDE-LIO reviews applications as they are received. Applicants are notified of a decision within six weeks after MDE-LIO receives the application. If your application is approved, follow these steps:
Start the Program
- Provide the program as outlined in your grant application.
- Pay all expenses up front and keep all itemized receipts for reimbursement.
After the program ends, submit the Mini-Grant Reimbursement Form in the Mini-Grant Application Packet [PDF], including itemized receipt(s). MDE-LIO will reimburse the district for the full amount awarded.
If you have questions regarding MDE-LIO mini-grants, please email [email protected].