The Living Classroom Education Access Fund

CINCINNATI—The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden is now able to offer FREE field trips to the Zoo for qualifying schools through The Living Classroom Education Access Fund. This new Fund will not only help schools with Zoo daytime field trips, but it can also be used towards a Nocturnal Adventures Overnight program.  The Living Classroom Education Access Fund is being made possible with lead support from The Helen G., Henry F. and Louise Tuechter Dornette Foundation, and founding partners – Time Warner Cable’s “Connect a Million Minds” program, The John A. Schroth Family Foundation, PNC Bank, Trustee, 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.”

The Cincinnati Zoo welcomed more than 86,000 school children last year, representing nearly 1,400 schools, and the Zoo is certain that those trips were much more than a lifetime memory.  Research has proven that field trip experiences, particularly those supported by inquiry in places like zoos are a powerful form of learning for children.  They enhance understanding of science standards and authenticate what students are learning in the classroom, bringing school book lessons to life.  And now, through The Living Classroom Education Access Fund, and its supporters, more Tri-state children than ever will get to experience wildlife at the Cincinnati Zoo.

For schools to apply for financial assistance on a daytime field trip 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. 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.  The same online application must be filled out to apply for the Nocturnal Adventures Overnight program.   More information can be found online at To speak to someone please contact Cory Christopher at 513-475-6171 or [email protected].