Funding and Resources

Learn how Imagine Learning’s qualified programs meet your funding requirements and create equitable pathways for each student.

Imagine More Equitable Learning Opportunities

Education budgets are complex, and matching funding with programs to solve inequities in your community isn’t always easy. We’re here to help.

Students working on tablet

Find the help you need, including:

  • Federal funding overview
  • Top five trends in ESSER III funds
  • Imagine Learning’s qualified programs
  • Private sector grant opportunities

Federal Funding Overview

The federal government provides funding to schools through its primary agency, the U.S. Department of Education. Federal funding for education can be broken down into three buckets: formula, discretionary, and emergency funds. The largest amounts of money traditionally come through Title I under ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act), and IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act).

The federal government contributes about 8–10% of U.S. public school budgets; the rest of school funding comes from state and local funds such as tax revenues. Funds are given to SEAs (State Education Agencies) who sub-grant funds to LEAs (Local Education Agencies).

► Learn more about Fiscal Year 2023 Federal Funding

► Reference our federal funding guide for Fiscal Year 2023

► IL National Funding Summary Guide (FY24)

American flag

Main sources of federal education programs

Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)

Supplements state and local resources and supports students from low-income families and low-achieving schools.

Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)

IDEA governs how states and public agencies provide early intervention, special education, and related services to more than 6.5 million eligible infants, toddlers, children, and youth with disabilities.

Emergency/Critical Needs

Funds issued through relief stimulus packages such as the CARES, CRRSA, ARP Acts (i.e., ESSER I, ESSER II, ESSER III, GEER I, GEER II, EANS I and EANS II funds) and Other Emergency Funds when critical needs arise.

Federal PreK–12 education grants

Grant Type: Formula

Uses formulas determined by Congress and has no grant application process.

Examples of Funds:

  • Title I-Part A “Grants to Local Educational Agencies”
  • Title II “Supporting Effective Instruction State Grants”
  • Title III “English Language Acquisition”
  • Title IV-Part A “Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants”
  • IDEA-Part B “Grants to States”

Grant Type: Discretionary

Awarded using a competitive grant application process.

Examples of Funds:

Funding STEM learning Breakthroughs

Funding for STEM programming in the United States is extensive across federal, state, and local government entities, private individuals and institutions, and non-profit organizations. Accurate levels for every source are difficult to determine, but broadly, the primary funding sources are:


State and Local Education Agencies (SEAs, LEAs) may use emergency relief funds toward STEM programming.


Leverage the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) formula programs for supplementary STEM education.


Programs vary by state and local jurisdiction.


Corporations, foundations, individuals, and other private organizations provide grant opportunities for STEM education.


Government entities award STEM grants to eligible education organizations through competitive grant applications.


Programs vary by state and local jurisdiction.

Discover our PreK-12 STEM Funding Guide to learn more

#1 Accelerating Learning

Students returned from pandemic learning an average of 4 months behind in reading and 5 months behind in math. Educators’ number one priority is helping students recover learning and move towards grade-level achievement.

#2 Social and emotional learning

Educators are widely concerned about the mental, social, emotional, and physical well-being of students, teachers, and families. Addressing the entire community with empathy and humanity is critical both to student and teacher wellness, as well as academic success.

#3 Family, student, and community engagement

Hybrid learning highlighted how essential the school-home connection is to student success. Prioritizing community and family engagement should remain a top priority to support ongoing student achievement and stronger school-family collaborations.

#4 Connectivity and broadband

The pandemic highlighted and exacerbated inequities in access to technology and connectivity across the United States. ARP ESSER III funds are being used towards purchasing educational technology (including hardware, software, and connectivity).

#5 Educator retention and addressing teacher shortages

Difficulties teaching during the pandemic and general burnout has made it difficult for districts to keep quality educators on staff. Retaining educators has, therefore, emerged as a new spending priority.

What priorities does your state have for using ARP ESSER III funding?

Watch our guide to state funding guidelines with Senior Grants Director Dana Pawinski.

Imagine Learning’s Qualified Programs

Our evidence-based solutions qualify for many key PreK–12 federal funding programs:

Chart displaying Imagine Learning solutions that are qualified for PreK-12 federal funding programs

Imagine Learning solutions align to additional federal annual formula funds not featured in the chart as well as a variety of federal and state competitive grants. All Imagine Learning solutions meet the ESSA evidence standards and can be used for implementations of evidence-based interventions, activities, and programs. Learn more about Imagine Learning’s ESSA effectiveness, by exploring our evidence here.

Funding alignment subject to change.

Private Sector Grant Opportunities

volunteers with school supplies

Education philanthropy continues to rise.

COVID-19 dramatically changed the way funders, specifically from the private sector, have traditionally invested in education. Foundations and corporations alike understand the critical importance they have in supporting the social, equitable, and educational needs of schools and districts across the country.

Imagine More Equitable Learning

Find out more about how our evidence-based programs meet your federal, state, and emergency relief funding requirements.