The Living Classroom Education Access Fund

The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden is now able to offer FREE field trips to the Zoo for qualifying schools by offering schools an application to apply for financial aid through The Living Classroom Education Access Fund. This aid will not only go towards helping schools go on Zoo daytime field trips but it can also be used towards a Nocturnal Adventures Overnight program at the Zoo, as well.  The Living Classroom Education Access Fund is being made possible with the lead support of The Helen G., Henry F. and Louise Tuechter Dornette Foundation, with other founding partners – Time Warner Cable’s “Connect a Million Minds” program, the Ambassador Council of the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden, and grants from Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America.

“We are pleased to support this worthwhile initiative that will help provide access to the Cincinnati Zoo for thousands of students from all walks of life,” said Heidi Jark, Managing Director of The Foundation Office at Fifth Third Bank. “Helen Dornette was a science educator who found great joy in her students’ enthusiasm for nature and how things worked in it. Supporting the Living Classroom Education Access Fund is a true testament to Ms. Dornette’s legacy and passion for science education.”

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For schools to apply for financial assistance on a daytime fieldtrip to the Zoo, teachers must submit documentation of financial need as either a school with 50% or more students receiving free or reduced lunches or as a Title I School. A description of how the trip will enhance learning in the classroom, along with a lesson plan attached, must also be submitted. If funding is granted, students and one chaperone for every 10 students will receive free admission. Additional chaperones will be $5/person. School bus parking is free while individual vehicles are $8 for the day. To apply for the Nocturnal Adventures overnight program, a creative application must be sent in.  More information can be found online at  To speak to someone please contact Kate Aug at 513-339-7724 or [email protected].