Bright Ideas Early Bird Deadline is Aug. 15

This Saturday, Aug. 15, is the Early Bird Deadline for the Bright Ideas education grant program. Educators who submit their Bright Ideas grant application online at by this deadline will be entered into a drawing to win one of five $100 Visa gift cards.

The Bright Ideas program was established in 1994 to provide educators with grant funding for innovative projects that engage students and bring learning to life. Grants are available to K-12 teachers for projects in any subject, and educators can apply individually or as a team. The final deadline to apply is in September, with the exact date varying by co-op. Search for your school to find the deadline for your area.

“This school year will look different for educators and students across our state, and now more than ever, it’s important to support creative approaches that will encourage student learning in a modified environment,” said Jennifer Heiss, Bright Ideas coordinator for North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives. “We know our teachers are having to be especially flexible and inventive, and our goal is to provide funding that will make it easier to navigate this challenging time in both physical and virtual classrooms.”

To apply, teachers must include a budget, explain the implementation, goals, creative elements and evaluation of the project, and have approval from their principal or supervisor. Applications will be judged through a competitive evaluation process. Additional grant-writing tips can be found at

In 2019, North Carolina’s electric cooperatives collectively set a record by awarding more than $716,000 in Bright Ideas funding for 660 projects, the most awarded in a single year in the history of the program. Since the program more than 25 years ago, educators statewide have received more than $12.9 million in Bright Ideas grant funding, and approximately 2.5 million North Carolina students have participated in 12,359 Bright Ideas-funded projects.