The K-12 Wind Schools program turns school buildings into hands-on science experiments, helping teachers to instruct students about science, math, technology, the environment, and other important topics. Grants support the installation of 1-5 kW wind turbines throughout Illinois at institutions serving grades K-12. Although each turbine is relatively small, students see first-hand how energy from wind is converted into electricity. Online monitoring of real-time electricity generation is included in the grant. Grantees receive assistance to coordinate system installation as well as curricular support.
Visit Illinois Solar Schools and Illinois Wind Schools to see real-time data from participants, and learn more about our efforts to educate the next generation about renewable energy.
- Public school that provides continuous educational services to K-12 students; or
- 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that is either a private school or other educational organization that provides continuous educational services to K-12 students
ALL applicants are required to provide a letter from the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) confirming their Employer Identification Number (EIN). 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations must additionally provide an IRS Tax Determination Letter, which may also contain the EIN information.
- Hold a “Wind Celebration” and make a commitment to teach about wind and renewable energy in the classroom
- Educate the community about wind and renewable energy
- Must be willing to conduct and pay for a Wind Site Assessment carried out by a Midwest Renewable Energy Association recognized Wind Site Assessor (There are currently no MREA certified wind site assessors listed. Please contact the Foundation for assistance.)
- Have a suitable site for proper wind turbine installation and operation, based on the Wind Site Assessment
- Co-fund a minimum of 10% of the turbine system installation costs
- Agree to implement online monitoring of system performance via the Illinois Solar Schools and Illinois Wind Schools website
- Keep the installation and monitoring system operational; Grantee is responsible for any costs related to maintenance, repair, or relocation
- Submit the results of an IDNR information request using the EcoCat Assessment Tool
- Show evidence of assurance of zoning approval
- Grantee must retire any environmental attributes (i.e. renewable energy credit, emission offsets, etc.) associated with the project
Eligible applicants may apply for up to $40,000 or 90% of the system and its installation costs, whichever is less. Any donations or discounts for equipment, hardware, or labor on behalf of the installer will be calculated as a reduction in the final project cost and may reduce the grant award from ICECF.
Applicants may be awarded a grant at a lower amount than requested.
- February 23, 2021 – CLOSED
- August 24, 2021 – CLOSED
Complete the online application, the required attachments, and submit.
Applications will be accepted only if filled out and submitted by the owner of the proposed project. Applications must be completed by a teacher if application is for a K-12 school.
- Please download, complete and save K-12 Wind Schools Form
- Wind Site Assessment (contact the Foundation to obtain a list of wind assessors)
- Zoning approval documents
- IDNR EcoCat Information Request Form
- Organization’s summary budget for the year (limit to a few pages)
- Internal Revenue Service Documentation Confirming your Employer Identification Number (EIN), usually a 147c letter*
- Internal Revenue Service Tax Determination Letter (for 501(c)(3)s)
- Form AG 990-IL, the IL Charitable Organization Annual Report (for 501(c)(3)s)
A confirmation e-mail is sent after an application is received.
The Foundation may follow up with additional questions for applicants.
Applicants will be notified of the Foundation’s decision approximately three months after receipt of applications.
* Please ensure that this is a letter from the Federal IRS, such as the 147c. If you do not have this letter, contact the IRS at 800.829.4933 and request a faxed letter. Keep in mind this takes 10-14 business days to acquire. The Foundation may deny your application if the correct letter is not received.
The Foundation’s K-12 Wind Schools application review process takes approximately three months. The grant award process is competitive. Some projects may be awarded at lower levels than requested; others may be declined altogether.