J. Robert Ford Athletic Grant Program

J. Robert Ford Athletic Grant Program

The Connecticut Association of Schools provides exemplary programs and services that promote excellence in the education of all children.  The Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference believes that interscholastic athletic programs and competition are an integral part of a student’s academic, social, emotional and physical development.

CAS-CIAC has established the J. Robert Ford Athletic Grant Program.  Through the generosity of sponsors, CAS has established the CAS Foundation that is able to provide grants to support projects or programs that would not otherwise be afforded by CAS-CIAC member schools. The J. Robert Ford Athletic Grant Program is designed to support schools demonstrating significant need in their efforts to provide basic athletic programs and services.

Grant Needs

Examples of activities or programs that may be submitted for consideration include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Purchase of equipment for initial startup of a new sport or replacing outdated equipment
  • Purchase of equipment necessary to meet changing NFHS rules requirements
  • Securing transportation for CIAC post-season competition
  • Securing practice site for CIAC post-season practice when facility rental is required
  • Support of program existence when elimination of funding threatens cancellation
    of a sport
  • Leadership workshops for teams and/or team captains
  • Participation in out-of-season team experiences such as summer camps


  • Mini-grants of $1000 or less
  • Grants up to $5000 to be used over three years with decreasing funding each year

Grant Criteria

  • Applicant must provide a detailed list of how the grant will be used.
  • Does the grant request cover the full cost needed?
  • What is the cost, if any, assessed to students?
  • Applicant must provide evidence that the current athletic department budget does not currently support the amount requested.
  • Photos or other imaging are required if requesting funds to be used toward equipment or facility upgrades.

Grant Restrictions

The grant will not support the following:

  • Monetary donation to start a new sport without the commitment by the
    Board of Education to sustain the program
  • Team awards, parties, dinners, etc.
  • Direct monetary, equipment, or material donations to community groups by school
  • More than one grant issued per school per year

Grant Approval Considerations

  • How many students will be impacted by the funding?
  • What are the long term benefits to the school’s athletic program(s)/student athletes?
  • Has the applicant clearly communicated a need, and does the proposal identify specifically how the need will be addressed?

Grant Application Process

Grant applications may be submitted at any time. The application may only be submitted with the approval of the school principal and athletic director. Applicants should send a completed application to:

Connecticut Association of Schools
Attn: Ms. Judy Sylvester
30 Realty Drive
Cheshire, CT  06410

Or email to jsylvesteratcasciacdotorg

Click here to download a word version of the application

Click here to view the application as a PDF

Our Sponsors

We would not be able to offer these grants if it were not for the faithful support of our generous sponsors.



About J. Robert Ford

J. Robert (Bob) Ford was a long time coach, basketball official, educator and high school administrator.He started his career in Connecticut as the Assistant Principal at Glastonbury High School, a position he held until his appointment as Principal of Ellington High School, where he remained for 17 years until his retirement.

Ford’s involvement with CAS-CIAC spanned over forty years. During that time he served and represented the organization in many capacities, including Chair of the CIAC Boys Basketball Committee, CIAC Boys Basketball Tournament Director, Vice Chair and Chair of the CIAC Board of Control, Chairman of the CIAC Eligibility Committee, Region 1 Representative on the NFHS Basketballl Rules Committee, and President of the Council of the New England Secondary School Principals Association.

After his retirement from Ellington High School in 1992, Bob joined the CAS-CIAC staff as the Director of Development. In this capacity he developed corporate partnerships and funding to help support the numerous events and programs that the organization annually provides for it’s membership.  Under Bob’s leadership the CAS Foundation was established and continues to grow today. CAS-CIAC is proud to announce the establishment of the J. Robert Ford Athletic Grant Program in honor of a man who contributed greatly to the success of the organization. Bob truly made a difference and was passionate about fostering education and high school athletics in the state of Connecticut.

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