Department Overview

The Outreach and Grants department assists schools, teachers and BCSD departments with researching and applying for competitive grants and funding opportunities. 

On behalf of our students, staff, and schools, and in the pursuit of educational excellence and success in life, our department works to ensure that all grant applications align with BCSD’s mission and vision, goals, and guardrails and that all potential opportunities for funding are diligently pursued on behalf of the district.

We are also the primary point of contact for all community partnerships who want to work with the district’s after-school programs, youth mentoring program, GEAR UP project, or donate to the above-mentioned programs.


Our mission is to support the Burlington Community School District in achieving its mission of educating all students for success in life by providing streamlined grant writing services and grant management that enhance student learning and strengthen our community.


Our vision is that we will cultivate student success by boldly pursuing competitive grant opportunities and building strategic partnerships with donors and stakeholders in our community that reflect the dynamic and diverse needs of BCSD students and their families.

What we do


  • Develop and submit competitive grants on behalf of the district
  • Assists in the development of school, program, and classroom-level grant applications 
  • Review all BCSD grant proposals for quality assurance, ethical considerations, and compliance with grant regulations and other requirements
  • Track and report on competitive grant submittals to BCSD Administration and Board members 
  • Provide historical information on district grants 
  • Collaborate on partnership and sub-award grant applications with external agencies and organizations

Applying for Grants for BCSD

If you are a BCSD employee interested in pursuing a grant for your classroom, project, or school, you are required to submit an email to the Outreach and Grants office prior to submitting your application. You can email with any inquiries.

If you are not a BCSD employee but are interested in pursuing a grant that would benefit BCSD, please contact the Outreach and Grants office so we can help you identify and apply for grant opportunities.

Community Outreach

  • Research and communicate funding opportunities to BCSD Staff and community partners
  • Develops and cultivates relationships with individuals, foundations, and other agencies for potential funding sources
  • Work with curriculum and operational leadership to identify school, instructional, and business funding needs, ensuring they strategically align with BCSD’’s goals and long-term objectives
  • Cultivate relationships with community organizations that can positively impact the life of our students and their families. 
  • Supervise the partnerships related to grant management such as the 21st Century Community Learning Center grants, GEAR UP Iowa 3.0, Club M youth mentoring grants and partnerships. 


The Grants and Community Outreach Department offers various training options for our community partners or internal school staff. If you have a professional development need in the areas of Developmental Relationships, Developmental Assets, Conscious Discipline, Team Building or Team Development, or BCSD school performance and demographic information, contact our staff. 

Donating to BCSD

Financial contributions from community members in the form of cash donations to the Burlington Community School District help support programs that directly assist our students. If you are interested in contributing to BCSD, please contact our business office. 

Burlington Community School District
Business Office
1429 West Avenue
Burlington, IA 52601

You may direct your gift to a specific school, BCSD department, one of our programs, or the District as a whole. Thank you for your generous support of our BCSD students. We are truly grateful for your generosity!


Presley Smith

Secretary to Grants & Outreach
Staff Placeholder Image

Cassie Gerst

Supervisor of Grants & Community Outreach
Cassie Gerst