Martha Holden Jennings Foundation
MHJ Foundation committed to Ohio’s public and charter school children and teachers

Supporting excellence
in public education
throughout Ohio


Who we are

For more than 60 years, the Martha Holden Jennings Foundation has awarded more than $150 million in grants to Ohio’s non-religious, public PK-12 school programs for a wide variety of projects and initiatives that foster DEEP LEARNING and EXCELLENT TEACHING. Begun in 1959 as a joint effort of Martha Holden Jennings and her nephew, Arthur S. Holden, the Foundation has sought to support the highest quality teaching, and teachers, across Ohio.

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Through my Jennings grant, my students practice language arts skills in the context of science. We read about topics and conduct hands-on experiments. Instead of me giving them all the information, they investigate and become leaders of their own learning.
— JORDAN ANKERMAN, 4th Grade Teacher, Licking Heights West Elementary School, Grant-to-Educators Recipient - “Text Literacy in Science”

“Did we do a little good today?”

— Arthur S. Holden, Jr.

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How we work

We believe the capacity to foster the development of Ohio’s students is primarily built by the teaching profession and partners that are committed to deep learning and excellent teaching.

It is our aim to support teachers, school leaders, and their partners in providing enriching learning environments so that students become empowered to learn and think deeply, enabling them to develop their passions, direct their lives, become responsible and contributing individuals, and achieve sustained, personal success.

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Our activities focus on three specific areas
we feel have the greatest impact:

Beacon of ideas for quality education

Provide leadership as a thought partner connecting educators, institutions and experts across disciplines.

Out of the box ideas for teaching

Invest in grant projects that show thoughtful planning and the potential for lasting impact on students’ growth and learning.

Teacher engaging students in creative ways with new ideas

Recognize the excellence of Ohio’s teachers and leaders who have demonstrated outstanding work.

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Grantees in action

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“The Foundation gives us hope...(and) provides us with opportunities
to think big.”

-Jack Hatert, Assistant Principal
Yellow Springs, OH

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Highlights of students experiencing


  • actively and deeply drawn in to learning

  • engaged in multi-step learning

  • conducting multi-faceted analysis

  • inspiring new thinking and behaviors

  • encouraged to be self-directed, critical thinkers

  • collaborating with peers, debating and discussing

  • expressing creativity and connections across disciplines

  • experiencing self-satisfaction and intellectual curiosity


Highlights of a teacher demonstrating


  • presents an intellectually challenging and globally-aware curriculum

  • is thoughtful, creative and caring, ensuring access for every student

  • inspires a life-long love of learning

  • connects concepts with personal experience

  • uses technology as a tool to further learning

  • collaborates and communicates with colleagues and parents

  • assumes responsibility for his/her professional growth and development




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