Lieutenant Gov. Will Ainsworth announced on Tuesday the opening of the application process for a new $179 million grant program for K-12 public schools across the state. 

The Alabama K-12 Capital Grant Program, created by the Legislature during its 2023 regular session, allows public schools to apply for one-time funding for capital projects, deferred maintenance, technology improvements, school security enhancements or existing debt service. 

The Lieutenant Governor is statutorily responsible for creating, administering and overseeing the application process. 

"This grant program offers a unique and historic opportunity to address long-standing needs within our local schools across the state," Ainsworth said in a statement. "Our goal is to ensure that the funding is used to improve the educational experience for students, teachers, and parents alike." 

Applications for funding must be submitted by the superintendents of local systems making the requests, and supporting documents, such as budgets, plans of action, photos, contracts, financial records and others, will be required, according to a news release from the Lieutenant Governor's Office. 

In most cases, systems will be required to provide matching funds, the amount of which is calculated based on a sliding scale formula specific to the school potentially receiving a grant. According to the Lieutenant Governor's Office, the formula considers variables that include the population of the school, the local funds available, and the number of students receiving free or reduced lunches.  

All applications will be submitted through an online portal, the web address of which was provided to superintendents via email. 

Grant requests may be submitted at any point during the next 45 days, but the application deadline is 5 p.m. on Friday, October 20. 

Once the process is complete and all applications have been thoroughly reviewed, approved projects will be announced before the end of the calendar year. 

Finance and Taxation Education Committee chairman State Sen. Arthur Orr (R-Decatur) said in a committee meeting in May the grant program would be for "I'm going to say projects from a couple hundred thousand to a million, or $2 million, or $3 million…somewhere in that range, maybe more that members can with their local superintendents apply and hopefully get some help and relief for their area." 

"It may not be enough to build a building, but it can certainly add a classroom or make some improvements," Orr said in May.

To connect with the author of this story or to comment, email

Don't miss out! Subscribe to our newsletter and get our top stories every weekday morning.