Early Learning FAQ


  • Application opens: mid-September 2022
  • Information session: September 22,2022 at 2 p.m.
  • Deadline to apply (include Budget): EXTENDED TO MONDAY, OCTOBER 31ST
  • Funds awarded: November 2022
  • Project completion: February 28, 2024
  • Final reports due: March 15, 2024


    Staff from libraries with well-established early learning hubs will serve as mentors and provide support to grantees as they develop their role as community hubs and connect young children and families with other programs that support literacy, learning, and health and wellness. Mentors and Early Learning Hub grantees will participate in bi-monthly Community of Practice meetings to share best practices and help new libraries successfully implement community hubs tailored to local needs.


    Each funded project must have at least one partner. A partner is defined as an organization with which your library has a written agreement, and which provides resources to the project, either cash or in-kind or both. Please note that any service provider who is paid with grant funds for their services is not a partner. 

    Match requirements

    A match is required for these grants, which may be cash, in-kind, or a combination of both. The match will be based on your library’s Local Income Per Capita (LIPC) level, which is derived from California Public Libraries Survey data:

    • For libraries in LIPC Level 1, a 20% match will be required.
    • For LIPC Level 2, a 25% match will be required.
    • For LIPC Level 3, a 30% match will be required.

    The match is a percentage of funds requested, not a percentage of the total budget. For example, the 20% match on a $100,000 funding request would be $20,000. We will consider reductions in match on a limited, case-by-case basis.

    To find your library’s LIPC, please check the State Library’s statistics webpage.

    Allowable/Unallowable Costs

    Allowable costs include:

    • Minor improvements specific to the project space, such as carpeting in one area, furniture, shelving, lighting, etc., or a privacy space build, are allowable. No major construction costs are allowed.
    • Staffing costs can be included, but all staffing must be project specific.
    • Programming costs are allowed, such as materials, supplies, take-home kits, minor equipment, and food when used to enhance full participation in the program.
    • Collections and resources are allowed.
    • Travel (in-state except by approval) is allowed.
    • Project promotion costs are allowed. The California State Library should be acknowledged in your promotional materials.

    Unallowable costs include but are not limited to (please ask if you have questions):

    • Fundraising activities, including grant writing
    • Cash reserves and endowment holdings; purchase of land, buildings or major construction
    • Non-educational social activities such as receptions, parties, galas
    • Gifts/prizes/incentives/stipends; cash prizes or gift certificates with monetary value
    • Contributions and donations to other entities
    • Expenses incurred before the start of the grant period or after the ending date of the grant period without extension request and approval
    • Lobbying activities that are intended to influence the actions, policies, or decisions of government officials

    Number of applications

    The number of applications a library jurisdiction may submit depends on its total number of outlets:

    • Fewer than 30 outlets = one application
    • 30-60 outlets = up to two applications
    • More than 60 outlets = up to three applications


    Grant recipients must ensure that the California State Library shall receive credit as the funding program and that the State of California likewise is acknowledged as the source of funds.

    All promotional materials and publications related to the project must include the following acknowledgement statement:

    “This project was supported in whole or in part by funding provided by the State of California, administered by the California State Library.”