Hernando County Education Foundation in Partnership with DonorsChoose

What is DonorsChoose?

DonorsChoose is a national nonprofit classroom funding site for teachers that engages the community in public schools. Teachers from every corner of America create classroom project requests that are funded by generous citizen donors as well as corporations and foundations that want to support our nation’s students and teachers.

DonorsChoose helps teachers get the materials they need, offers a strong community of donors and partners who are willing to fund projects, and provides a site built exclusively for educators to help them succeed in the classroom.

Who is eligible?

  • All public and charter schools are eligible in Hernando County.
  • You are employed full-time by a public school, public charter school, or the Office of Head Start.
  • You are a front-line educator or faculty member mainly responsible for the direct teaching or counseling for students.
  • You create your own lesson plans, and not primarily assisting another lead teacher.

Who is not eligible?

  • Principals or those who are in a primarily administrative role
  • Those that do not spend at least 75% of their time with students
  • Parents and PTA
  • Instructional Aides and Paraprofessionals
  • Coaches not at the 75% level of spending their time with students
  • Temporary and Substitute Teachers
  • Non-instructional Staff


How to get started:

  1. Go to https://www.donorschoose.org/
  2. On the homepage, select “Sign in.” Then, select “create an account” found at the bottom of the on-screen pop-up.
  3. Enter your Personal Information consisting of your personal email address and your full name.
  4. Click “Next: select my school.” Enter your Teaching Details consisting of your school name and the name your students call you.
  5. Finally, select “Register” to agree to the terms and conditions. Now, you have created an account!

After you have created an account. Brainstorm what your classroom needs.

The next steps in the process will involve submitting a project request to obtain materials. The average project request takes about 25 minutes to create and submit.

  1. Create a classroom project request, take a few minutes to describe your students.
  2. Go shopping for your classroom.
  3. Write your project essay to inform donors about your students and project.
  4. Donations for your first project may be matched.
  5. Then, you will select your materials. Once your project is fully funded, DonorsChoose will purchase your materials and ship them straight to your school. For compliance with the Hernando County School Board, all materials will be required to be shipped to the school address only.

For additional resources and tips for Teachers, please visit:

Creating a project – Help Center (donorschoose.org)

Principals and Administrators:

What can I do as a Principal or Administrator?

  1. Opt in to email updates by visiting https://www.donorschoose.org/principals or by contacting principals@donorschoose.org to set up email notifications.
  2. Principals can also sign up to receive a Principal Toolkit.

For additional resources and tips for Principals and Administrators, please visit: Information for school principals & administrators – Help Center (donorschoose.org)

Important Notes:

  • The Hernando County Education Foundation will submit approval to the school district for all approved funded project requests.
  • Due to current conditions involving virtual learning and social distancing, there is currently no support for in-person field trips. (DonorsChoose will indicate when this option reopens.)
  • For compliance with the Hernando County School Board, all materials must be shipped and delivered to the school.

What can I request?

  • From pencils to 3-D printers, you can request anything you need to enrich your student’s experience at school.
    • Keep in mind that you MUST have approval for any IT Electronic Equipment.
  • Examples of requests include classroom supplies, project supplies, sports equipment, a classroom library, funding for professional development, field trip expenses, furniture, and musical instruments.
  • Funding requests should never include technology the district is required to provide under IDEA.
    • Per district policy, “Each public agency must ensure that assistive technology devices or assistive technology services, or both, as terms defined in section 300.5 and 300.6 respectively, are made available to a child with a disability if required as a part of a child’s: (1) Special Education; (2) Related Services; or (3) Supplementary Aids and Services.” Regulation 300.105 Assistive Technology.

Privacy and Safety:

  • DonorsChoose has strict guidelines for student photos and ensures the site is free from student-identifying information. As per school board policy, student privacy will not be violated, and student photos will require parental consent.


Please sign your initials on the line next to the following statements to show that you have read and agree to the terms presented by the Hernando County Education Foundation and the Hernando County School Board to utilize the DonorsChoose program.

________ I understand I must obtain approval for any IT Electronic Equipment by submitting the form to the IT Department.

  • For all software requests, please complete the Software Approval Form and submit it to the Hernando County School District IT Department.
  • For all technology-related purchase requests, you must directly contact the Hernando County School District IT Department and the requests will be emailed approved or denied.

________ I understand teachers must have written permission forms signed for any student pictures.

________ I understand all items donated must be delivered to the school.

________ I understand all donated items received will become the property of the Hernando County School District and remain at the school the request was made for even if the teacher moves to another school.

________ I understand all donated items must follow school board inventory practices.

  • For any non-monetary donation that the individual item is valued at $1,000 or more please complete the Donations Form and submit it to Genele Firlik via email at firlik_g@hcsb.k12.fl.us.

________ I understand the Hernando County School Board Policy does not allow crowdfunding outside of the Hernando County Education Foundation and the Hernando County School Board fundraising guidelines adhere to school board policy.

Name:  ________________________________ School:  ____________________________ Date:  _____________

Please return to: brinker_t@hcsb.k12.fl.us or through internal pony to: HCEF Attn: Tammy Brinker

Please follow this link for a printable, PDF version of this information and to access the agreement: Printable PDF (Located here)