Teacher Innovation Grants

The CMS Foundation established the Teacher Innovation Fund in 2014 through a $250,000 donation by the Charlotte Hornets Foundation, Lowe’s and Fox Sports Southeast. Through grants awarded to CMS teachers, the Teacher Innovation Fund supports the implementation of innovative strategies to educate and prepare every student to graduate college- and career-ready.

Grants in Action

Available Grants

Albemarle Innovation Grants


The Albemarle Innovation Grant program seeks to “Grow the Good” by empowering educators to implement innovative programs and strategies that enhance the learning experience of their students and build the skills needed to be college- and career-ready in the 21st century. This not only encompasses mastery of content in core subject areas, but also includes creativity, communication, critical thinking, and collaboration skills.

Grants of up to $5,000 will be awarded. All CMS teachers and school-based support staff are eligible to apply.

The Fall 2019 grant cycle is now open. The application deadline has been extended to Friday, November 22. Download the application here

Original Application

This grant program is made possible by support from the Albemarle Foundation, a philanthropic affiliate of Albemarle Corporation.


Social & Emotional Learning Grants

The Social & Emotional Learning (SEL) Teacher Innovation Grant Program seeks to spark and spread innovative SEL practices in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. As defined by CASEL, social and emotional learning is the process through which children and adults acquire and effectively apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions. The core competencies of social and emotional learning include self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills and responsible decision-making.

The CMS Foundation will award grants up to $2,500 to help CMS educators implement school-based initiatives that support students’ social and emotional learning.

The application for the Spring 2020 SEL Teacher Innovation Grant will be released in February. 

Previous Grants

Hornets Teacher Innovation Grants

The Hornets Teacher Innovation Grant Program was the first grant program established through the Teacher Innovation Fund. A total of 55 grants were awarded to nearly 70 teachers, impacting 45 schools throughout Mecklenburg County.

Learn about the impact of these grants in the Impact Summary Reports: