“Water’s Cool @ School!” program will award 25 middle schools across the state grants to upgrade an existing water fountain with a contactless bottle filling station


NASHVILLE, Tenn. – (October 5, 2021) – Delta Dental of Tennessee (Delta Dental) today announced a new grant opportunity for middle schools to replace an existing water fountain with a contactless Elkay bottle-filling stations through its Water’s Cool @ School program. All Tennessee middle schools are encouraged to apply before the November 23 deadline. Delta Dental of Tennessee will award grants to 25 middle schools across the state.

Delta Dental originally launched the Water’s Cool @ School program in 2020 to help commemorate its 55th anniversary, awarding 55 grants to elementary schools across the state to upgrade their water fountains. Select highlights from the 2020 grantees include a viral rap song performed by  teachers from Mt. Carmel Elementary School, a superhero-themed submission from Millington Elementary School, and a video from Thelma Barker Elementary School highlighting the health benefits of drinking more water. Interest in the grant program was so strong that the company committed to offering another round of grants in 2021, this time focused on middle schools.

“Drinking more water is great for the mind, as it can help improve concentration and focus, and for the body, as it can help with circulation and to keep your bones, joints, and even teeth healthy. These benefits are welcome at any age, and especially important for kids,” said Dr. Phil Wenk, CEO and President of Delta Dental of Tennessee. “Schools have a lot on their plates, and many have even shut down their water fountains to help mitigate the spread of germs. We are pleased to be able to offer another round of grants to help make water more accessible to students and staff during the school day.”

To apply ahead of the November 23 deadline, interested schools should:

· Visit for more information and to complete the online application.

· Create a short video or other creative project highlighting how water is good for your health and teeth, why your school needs the bottle filling station, or what makes a healthy smile.

· Share that video on social media with the hashtag #WatersCoolTN and include a link with their grant application. A creative project is not required, but applications that do include one will be credited.

· Include photographs of the current water fountain that the school would like to replace, which will help inform the installation process for selected schools.

The 25 selected schools will receive a water bottle filling station, including installation, and toothbrushes for all students. The top five schools will receive water bottles for all students, faculty and staff members following installation.

Grant announcements will be made in early 2022, and installations will be scheduled for spring 2022.

“Water’s Cool @ School” grant applications are open now through November 23 at

For more information about Delta Dental’s “Water’s Cool @ School” grant program, click here. To learn more about Delta Dental’s philanthropic work across Tennessee, visit the Smile180 Foundation website.


Delta Dental of Tennessee
Delta Dental of Tennessee is the state’s largest independent dental benefits carrier with more than 1.4 million lives covered. As part of the Delta Dental Plans Association, Delta Dental of Tennessee members have access to the largest dental network in the nation with more than 154,000 providers serving more than 437,000 locations. With the simple mission of ensuring healthy smiles, Delta Dental of Tennessee works hard to help members of the communities it serves. Along with its corporate foundation, Smile180, Delta Dental of Tennessee donated more than $4.8 million in funding and in-kind services to over 140 organizations in 2020.