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Contest Guidelines

For the eighth year, ORAU is accepting applications from local schools and those within a 50-mile radius of Oak Ridge, for an Extreme Classroom Makeover. ORAU defines a 50-mile radius as any school located in a county whose border is within 50 miles of Oak Ridge, Tenn. To see a complete list of eligible school counties, go to the Eligible Counties page.

The contest is open to public school teachers of grades 3-10 who are teaching STEM subjects. Entrants must have the consent of their principals and, if chosen, be willing to have their 2016‒2017 classroom experience highlighted on the Internet and in various media outlets.

Timelines and Deadlines

Date Activity
September 1, 2016 Call for Intent to Apply submissions opens
October 18, 2016 Intent to Apply deadline (Note: the full application and a 3-4 minute video is not due at this time.)
January 27, 2017 Full Application and Video Entry deadline
February 2017 Selection Committee Review
End of March/ First of April 2017 Winner announced
May 2017 Purchase decisions for technology/equipment made
June ‒ July 2017 ORAU works with school system to install new equipment in classroom
August 2017 Reveal Event

Entry Format

Entrants will be required to submit an intent to apply, a written application, a contract signed by their principal and also a 3-4 minute video that illustrates potential uses of technology and the need for technology in their classrooms. The video must include the teacher who is applying and one or more students.

Please feel free to be as creative as you like. Examples of possible approaches include a documentary, a classroom experiment, a classroom exercise, a dance, a musical, etc.


The winner will be determined by a panel of educators and ORAU staff.

Entries will be judged on how well they:

  • Demonstrate or explain the need for technology
  • Demonstrate or explain the potential use of technology
  • Demonstrate overall creativity in the entry and an explanation of the teaching philosophy and/or approach that will be used to expand the learning experience


The prize package will include $25,000 worth of technology and acceptable classroom improvements awarded to the school on behalf of the teachers. The winners will have the opportunity to consult with ORAU staff on the technology and equipment most suitable to his or her teaching environment.

To Apply

After October 18, you will be able to submit your full application and upload your video entry for the Extreme Classroom Makeover to the 2017 application page. Please note that you must submit an intent-to-apply form by the October 18 deadline in order to be eligible to apply with the full application and video entry in January 2017.

Contact Us

For more information please contact:

Jenna Harpenau