DonorsChoose.org

Discussion in 'General Education' started by chicagoturtle, Jan 27, 2018.

  1. chicagoturtle

    chicagoturtle Fanatic

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    Good Morning,
    If you are a public school teacher in the U.S. that has never posted (or never been funded), I can help you with a $5 match code towards your first project. I have been chosen as a teacher ambassador to assist new teachers in using the site.
    Here’s what you need to do:
    1) Ask me if you have questions - I have been using this website for years and have had many projects funded.
    2) Submit a project and then send me a PM with your project title and link!
     
  2.  
  3. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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  4. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

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    This isn't a self-promotion. It's a legitimate grant program that could help another teacher.
     
  5. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    My mistake. Sorry about that!
     
  6. TrademarkTer

    TrademarkTer Groupie

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    futuremathsprof is the kid who reminds the teacher to assign homework.
     
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  7. chicagoturtle

    chicagoturtle Fanatic

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    Yes this is a website, check it out if you’re a public school teacher (or Head Start), where you can get items you need for your classroom. You “shop” for what you want, write a grant, and people can fund it. They’ve been around for 14 years and are on a campaign to add more teachers.
     
  8. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

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    Yes but ChicagoTurtle gets something out of it so FutureMath was probably just saying Donors Choose needs to step up and pay for advertising. By all means, if people want to think the post is simply altruistic in nature, feel free.
     
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  9. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

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    Okay, I will! :rolleyes:

    Thanks, chicagoturtle for trying to get people hooked up with classroom resources! If someone hadn't told me about this site as a beginning teacher, I would have missed out on thousands of dollars of free stuff. I don't come with the free $5, but I can also answer any questions if you send them via PM. It's definitely worth a shot.
     
  10. MsAbeja

    MsAbeja Companion

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    I'm a frequent user of DonorsChoose.org and was also offered this opportunity to be an ambassador, and by all indications there were no "kickbacks" for the chosen ambassadors (actually part of the reason I decided not to participate. It sounded like a significant time commitment without a lot of extrinsic reward. )

    At best, they'll get DC credits for helping new teachers navigate the site, but it isn't at the expense of the new teachers. DonorsChoose.org has been incredible for my classroom, I enthusiastically recommend it .
     
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  11. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Since ambassadors DO NOT receive anything for their time other than the knowledge of a hand up given, I agree that this is not spam or self-promotion. Actually, I will probably be in touch for some help getting started because I have no idea how to do so!
     
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  12. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    Exactly. I would love to do a project but really have no idea where to start! LOL Guess I need to contact Turtle! :D
     
  13. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

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    If you are in a school where funding is an issue, I understand using the site. Otherwise, you might as well try to raise funds from your class parents directly. They are the ones who will end up funding anyway. Why give donorschoose a cut of your money if you don’t need to?
     
  14. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    My school is about 95% economically disadvantaged and about 40% homeless (this includes our "couch surfers"). The majority of our families are on SNAP and CHIP in order to make ends meet. I cannot ask them for money they don't have. However, I do have access to a loving, giving community who would happily help these students if they had the means.
     
  15. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Because it's not MY money. The product belongs to the school. I have DonorsChoose to be a fast way to get some things I need without spending my own money or begging administration. Do they take a cut of the money? Sure do. They probably have expenses and employees to pay. It's just business. I still get my donated stuff, so what do I care?
     
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  16. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    Most of my students' parents don't have the money. My students aren't even able to get out and do fund raisers (moderate to severe ID). I have instructional money but sometimes you need more than you can afford. DC is a great way to get what you need. It would be nice to ask parents for this, that and the other and they get it for you.
     
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  17. MsAbeja

    MsAbeja Companion

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    I just joined in May of 2017 and have managed to raise thousands of dollars worth of needed supplies for my classroom (I'm a first-year teacher and I have 4 completely different preps. I need a lot of stuff!) So far, parents of my students haven't donated anything. I have benefitted form MANY match offers (a philanthropist or corporation creates a match offer on DC and teachers write projects that qualify, then the corporation matches every donation that is made to your project.) Some are dollar-for-dollar matches and some are even better, 3-to-one or 5-to-1 matches.

    DonorsChoose.org is actually well known for being incredibly transparent. They only take $30 per project written, with an additional optional donation that donors can choose not to give. But, it's worth it, I think, because of the work that they do finding awesome matching partners. Most of my donors have been people I don't personally know.
     
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  18. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    I had two projects funded. Both had matching funds that helped my projects come to fruition.

    My school has banned them. I’m not sure why as I was getting school materials at no cost to them and we are severely cash strapped thanks to the legislator.
     
  19. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    Well that is crappy!! :(
     
  20. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    What's the reasoning behind the ban? Any idea?
     
  21. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

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    Obvious reason is they don’t want it to look like they don’t fund well enough.
     
  22. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    I'm supposed to have some DC'd robots arrive today...
     
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  23. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

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    I'm headed to a PD trip in Florida next week...all expenses paid, thanks to DC! :cool:
     
  24. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

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    DonorsChoose.org has jumped the shark. This crowd funding society we find ourselves in has reached silly proportions.
     
  25. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    If you don't care for DonorsChoose, then don't use it.
    Meanwhile, I'll be water skiing with The Fonz.
    [​IMG]
     
  26. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

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    Don’t you think using donors choose to take out of state for a PD is a little outside of the intended scope? Am I really the only one who thinks that?
     
  27. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    Why do you care what they use the funds for? You don't like DC. So, the point is moot.
     
  28. a2z

    a2z Maven

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    Not who you responded to, but my take:

    "DonorsChoose.org makes it easy for anyone to help a classroom in need. Public school teachers from every corner of America create classroom project requests, and you can give any amount to the project that inspires you"

    It is designed to help classrooms, not further people's careers. If people start using it as education funding, people will move away from the good that Donorschoose.org was intended for.

    I say if someone wants to get money for a PD, use GoFundMe because in reality the biggest benefit is to the person who is getting the funds, not the school.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2018
  29. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

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    I didn’t say I don’t like it, I just think they should pay for the ad space, just like that virtual teaching site that posts on here once a month. What does irritate me is the notion that this noble venture to help supply needy children is being used for a PD vacay. I’d be embarrassed even asking for that. Much like the people on here who were slamming the parents for sending out a registry to their one year old’s Birthday party a few months ago. To each their own.
     
  30. heatherberm

    heatherberm Cohort

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    Donors Choose lists professional development as one of the things its willing to help out with and provides a clear breakdown of how much teachers can request to cover various things. No one's going on an extravagant vacation on Donors Choose funds, especially if the PD is taking place in an expensive area.

    https://help.donorschoose.org/hc/en...3-Creating-a-Professional-Development-Project

    I've used Donor's Choose for a few things. The last district I worked in started a blended learning initiative and gave us all kinds of cool apps, websites, programs etc to use, but didn't give my building any tech. :rolleyes: I got a handful of iPads and some headphones with mics through DC.
     
  31. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

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    What a scam. What’s to stop me and a friend from setting up a trip to Japan (for PD of course) and each of us entirely funding the others project? Why would we do that? We can write the whole thing off on our taxes.

    Gotta love this world...
     
  32. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    In the case of funding a PD, I have to agree that is an incorrect use of DC. My hope is to use it to purchase a washer and dryer (I have a plumber who will donate his services to hook them up) for my homeless students who don't have clean clothes. If they stay in school for the day, they get access to the facilities.
     
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  33. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

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    Sounds like a noble venture. How will you fund the ongoing detergent and dryer sheets?
     
  34. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Good question! I have an individual sponsor who has given the school a stipend at the local grocery store for breakfast items and other needs, but not enough for this kind of machinery.
     
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  35. MsAbeja

    MsAbeja Companion

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    I don't get how using DC for PD could be seen as a "misuse" of the site. No one is forcing any donors to contribute, and there is a limit on what expenses you can request funding for (for example, they'll include the full cost for conference fees, but have a (fairly small) cap on flight and hotel expenditures. You can't just take a fancy trip abroad and write it all off, that's not how the site works.

    According to John Hattie's research, teacher efficacy is one of the most powerful and predictive factors in improving student outcomes, and I think that self-selected professional development can only increase Teacher efficacy. I don't see how anyone could try to claim that PD doesn't directly benefit students.
     
  36. MsAbeja

    MsAbeja Companion

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    Total transportation expenditures covered PER TRIP is $150. That includes round-trip airfare and ground transportation. They also give a total lodging allowance of $100/day. Good luck planning a lavish trip to Japan on that budget.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2018
  37. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

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    Admittedly, I didn’t notice the cap on transportation. I’m willing to admit when wrong. I don’t see there being a cap on how many days beyond the PD you can stay and take advantage of $100 per day hotel and $60 per day food though.
     
  38. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

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    There are local and webinar training options, many of which are free. Theoretically there is only so much money to go around, I think that should go to tangible things that are available to the children. Most would agree, for PD to be successful, there has to be continued follow up, not attend lectures for a few days. We aren’t talking about earth shifting changes occuring based on a few days in Florida.
     
  39. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

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    1. This is a national conference for the Council for Exceptional Children. It's not something that can just be done online. I NEVER get PD related to Special Education. Trust me, few people care what we do or the progress my kids make.
    2. My district would never be able to afford to pay for this conference even if they felt like it...some wealthy districts can. It's not fair that some teachers get access to that information/training for their students, and some don't.
    3. If PD was an incorrect use of DC, PD wouldn't be an option. I've done nothing wrong. You have no idea what "continued follow up" is planned for my PD or how I plan to reflect on my own learning. I don't participate in things that won't be beneficial to my students.

    Glad to see assuming positive intent remains alive and well!
     
  40. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Heaven help better teacher training help students...
     
  41. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    This is why "Assume Good Intentions" is one of our staff norms. I think we all want what's best and right for our kids and the best/ethical use of money.
     
    bella84 likes this.

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