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Grants and Other Financial Assistance Programs: FY2016

SY2015-16 Cohort of MA Commendation Schools/MA National Blue Ribbon Schools Dissemination Grant
Fund Code: 321-B

Purpose: The State System of Support at the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education is offering competitive grants to foster cross-school, intra-regional professional learning through strategic partnerships. Partnerships will center around eligible Title I schools from the list of MA Commendation/MA Blue Ribbon Schools named in SY2015-16. The aim of this grant is to spread effective practices from these schools to others, with these practices framed according to the Department's 2014 Turnaround Practices in Action research report Download Word Document that identifies what has been effective in MA turnaround schools. Commendation/Blue Ribbon applicants will highlight one or more of the Turnaround Practices that will be in focus for the school-to-school collaboration or will share how a regional Collaborative has signed on to help identify and help spread dissemination-worthy practices that are in place.

Each partnership shall be comprised of at least one Massachusetts Title I school that was named a Commendation School and/or a National Blue Ribbon School in 2015-16 (see eligibility list) and one or more Title I Level 3, 4, or 5 schools in the commended school's region. Preference will be given to Commendation School applicants that form partnerships with more than one Level 3, 4, or 5 site. Each partnership may also draw in the services of a regional Collaborative which can help with convening the partner schools, facilitating the cross-sharing experiences, and disseminating the shared practices to representatives from the Department. Partnering with a Collaborative is encouraged.

Additionally, successful applicants will share a specific methodology they plan to use as part of their dissemination project, as well as a timeline for engaging in the dissemination work. For example, they might note that they will host purposeful visitation to observe school practice; they might organize and facilitate a professional forum centered around a particular Turnaround Practice; or they might indicate that they will disseminate print or digital resources related to specific Practices that have been effective for them. While the Title I Commendation/Blue Ribbon awardees will have prime responsibility for sharing, the partnerships will not be one-directional, in that the partnering Title I Level 3, 4, or 5 sites also will share their own promising practices that have yielded results to date.

Collaboratives may also apply on behalf of a pair or group of eligible schools, provided the Collaboratives' dissemination work will be attributable to those schools. Collaborative applicants will detail the same information above (that is, partners involved, specifics related to the dissemination effort, the Turnaround Practice[s] in focus, and the timeline associated with the dissemination).

By 5 p.m. on Friday, February 26, 2016, interested schools on the eligibility list and interested Collaborative partners should submit proposals (one per partnership—min. one eligible school, one Title I L3/4/5 partnering school, and perhaps one Collaborative [optional]) of no more than three pages to describe the following:
  1. Which specific Turnaround Practice(s) is/are most attributable to their success, and why
  2. Which practices they would highlight to disseminate what has made them successful
  3. A specific plan for disseminating those practices
  4. A timeframe for dissemination
  5. Details related to proposed use of the funding and full budget pages
  6. Signed cover sheet, with signature from Superintendent or designee in lead district (with lead district being the one with the Title I Commendation/Blue Ribbon School or being the Collaborative that agrees to be in charge of the funding/budget)
Priorities: While schools are encouraged to use the framing of the Turnaround Practice(s), particular emphasis should be placed on the role teachers have played in contributing to a school's performance.
Eligibility: See Eligibility List Download PDF Document  Download Excel Document
Funding: Up to $42,005 is available through Federal Title I School Improvement funds, and individual awards may be of amounts up to $15,000.
Fund Use: Fund use must be consistent with the priorities described above and requirements associated with Title I funding.

All expenditures will be closely reviewed as they relate to the priorities of this grant opportunity.

Funds may not be used to provide refreshments.
Project Duration: Upon Award - 8/31/16
Program Unit: Regional System of Support
Contacts: Eve Bassett, Ed.D.
Phone Number: (781) 338-3113
Date Due: Friday, February 26, 2016
Proposals must be received at the Department by 5:00 p.m. on the date due.
Required Forms:
Download Excel Document
Standard Contract and Budget Forms
Download PDF Document  Download Word Document
Part III — Required Program Information form with reference to specific partnering and Turnaround Practices
Submission Instructions: Submit two (2) sets, each with an original signature of the Superintendent.

Mail to:

Eve Bassett, Ed.D.
Regional System of Support
Massachusetts Department of
Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street
Malden, MA 02148-4906

Last Updated: January 27, 2016
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