The need to write an educational proposal may occur when you have a great idea for an education project and look for funding from the government or a foundation. Alternatively, you may receive a solicitation for proposals covering specific topics or education problems. In either case, the potential funding source provides a description of the content and format required. Following the guidelines, offering a creative idea with measurable outcomes and clear writing improve your chances of gaining funding.

Things You Will Need
  • Solicitation and proposal guidelines

  • Data on performance of target subjects

  • Background on your organization

  • Data to support costs

  • Word processor with spelling and grammar checker (optional)

Review the format and content requirements for the educational proposal. Make a checklist you can use for the final review before submitting. Working backward from the submission date, create a calendar for collecting data, writing, editing and reviewing.

Summarize the problem that your educational proposal addresses. Use research data rather than opinion about the nature and degree of the problem. Highlight how achieving the goals of your educational proposal improve the conditions causing the problem or ameliorate the consequences through educational intervention.

Prepare an overview of your organization that highlights successes in similar educational enterprises, the number of students you serve and demographic information on your population.

Create a plan to implement your proposal. The plan should include objectives, activities and performance measurement. Each plan element needs a goal that ties back to the problems identified. The performance measures need specific behavioral or numeric outcome measures.

Write a budget to implement your educational proposal. Use verifiable information on salaries, benefits and indirect costs. Collect vendor quotes on materials purchased as part of implementing the proposed activities.

Write a draft of each proposal section following the format requirements provided by the funding organization. Non-profit Guides suggests using active verbs with supportable facts to answer key questions on why your organization qualifies to receive funds, who benefits from your proposal and how your proposed plan meets the needs expressed by the funder’s solicitation.

Pull the entire proposal together and review the writing, content and format using the proposal checklist. Use a spelling and grammar checker available with most word processing programs to help identify simple errors for correction. Make needed edits and submit.


If you use electronic submission, allow an extra day before the proposal’s due date in case there are problems with the funding organization’s server or your connection.