Language for Funding Applications + Grant Proposals

If you are writing a grant proposal to fund Wayfinder in your school or district, check out the language and resources below. You’ll find helpful talking points for each major section commonly found on grant proposals.

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Borrow the Language Below to Easily Complete Applications + Proposals

Needs Statement: K-12 SEL

See the following for helpful information and language


Research on SEL student impact

The following language comes from a seminal meta-analysis of 213 school-based SEL programs

Compared to controls, SEL participants demonstrated significantly improved social and emotional skills, attitudes, behavior, and academic performance that reflected an 11-percentile-point gain in achievement.

Current findings document that SEL programs yielded significant positive effects on targeted social-emotional competencies and attitudes about self, others, and school. They also enhanced students’ behavioral adjustment in the form of increased prosocial behaviors and reduced conduct and internalizing problems, and improved academic performance on achievement tests and grades. 

[C]lassroom teachers and other school staff effectively conducted SEL programs. This result suggests that these interventions can be incorporated into routine educational practices and do not require outside personnel for their effective delivery. It also appears that SEL programs are successful at all educational levels (elementary, middle, and high school) and in urban, suburban, and rural schools.


Another meta-analysis followed up with K-12 students after they engaged in SEL and found that SEL led to several positive personal and academic years after intervention

Follow-up outcomes (collected 6 months to 18 years postintervention) demonstrate SEL's enhancement of positive youth development. Participants fared significantly better than controls in social-emotional skills, attitudes, and indicators of well-being. Benefits were similar regardless of students’ race, socioeconomic background, or school location. Postintervention social-emotional skill development was the strongest predictor of well-being at follow-up.


A report from the National Association of the State Boards of Education (NASBE) recommends that schools use SEL to improve school climate

Creating nurturing learning environments also requires teachers to support the development and integration of SEL into academic learning. Teachers must be able to teach and model critical social skills such as cooperation and communication and emotional skills, including empathy, emotional recognition, and self-regulation. Practicing empathy specifically helps teachers view student behavior through the lens of child development. This approach leads teachers to identify problematic behavior as a symptom of unmet needs or negative experiences that can be addressed through targeted supports rather than as a sign of willful defiance or disrespect.


Another study on school climate in middle and high schools revealed that positive school perception can improve attendance and academic performance

[S]chool climate and school satisfaction were associated with higher grades. Research has shown that both liking school and forming strong relationships at school may help explain behaviors related to academic achievement

Furthermore, in both middle and high school analyses, school climate and school satisfaction reduced the likelihood of skipping school. These results were anticipated and are supported by the literature related to a positive school climate’s impact on absences.

Needs Statement: Adult SEL

See the following for helpful information and language


Articles about adult SEL


Research on adult SEL

SEL supports employability

When applied to employment, SEL skills have been linked to problem-solving and self-regulation (a “critical thinking disposition,” Arslan & Demitras, 2016) and employment skills, information development, and competence (“lifelong learning,” Akcaalan, 2016). On the job, SEL has been related to increased job satisfaction and decreased stress among employed teachers (Collie et al., 2015).


The impact of social-emotional wellness on teachers’ effectiveness

Research shows that teaching is one of the most stressful occupations; moreover, stress in the classroom is contagious—simply put, stressed-out teachers tend to have stressed-out students. In the past few years, several interventions have specifically sought to improve teachers’ social-emotional competence and stress management in school, and Schonert-Reichly reviews the results, many of which are promising.


The need for educator social-emotional competence

A review of the extant literature on developing SEL competence among educators highlights the following key principles: educators need to a) model positive behaviors, b) create and sustain healthy relationships, and c) be reflective practitioners. Additionally, educators need to be aware of practices that promote social and emotional competencies in the educational environment.

We conclude with guiding principles for training programs and professional learning opportunities for strengthening educators’ understanding of their own SEL to improve daily pedagogical practice and ensure each school-wide initiative around SEL drives seamless strategies for attaining school improvement outcomes


Goals + Objectives

See the following for helpful information and language

  • Wayfinder equips students with essential social-emotional skills that support academic achievement: active listening, attention, direction-following, and more. Additionally, Wayfinder’s K-12 programming helps teachers guide students to cultivate empathy, build their problem-solving abilities, control impulses, and resolve conflicts. The improvement of these skills not only enhances social interactions within the classroom but also builds competencies that will support students in lifelong professional and personal growth. 


We plan to implement Wayfinder to:

Improve belonging + school climate


We have chosen Wayfinder because they align with our:

  • State/district SEL standards

  • State/district portrait of a graduate

  • Academic standards

  • Health standards

  • Career and Technical Education Standards 


Wayfinder is used by:

  • 600,000 students

  • 50,000 teachers

  • 1200 schools

  • 42 US states

  • 15 countries


After implementing Wayfinder, we expect to see improved student behavior, stronger peer and teacher-student relationships, and reduced behavior referrals.


The Waypoints Assessment Suite includes Summative Assessments to track Wayfinder’s impact. Administered 2-3 times per year, the Summative Assessment tracks students’ progress in growing their self-awareness, adaptability, empathy, collaboration, agency, and purpose.


Wayfinder has flexible pricing options to meet the needs of any school or district seeking to use Wayfinder.