Grants and Other Financial Assistance Programs: FY2014
Academic Support Services Allocation Grant Program
Fund Code: 632 (School Year)/625 (Summer)
|Purpose: ||The goal of this state-funded allocation grant program is to enhance academic support services so that all eligible students will meet the state's Competency Determination required for high school graduation.|
This grant program's theory of action is that if programs provide eligible students with small group instruction that addresses identified gaps in their acquisition of knowledge and skills in English language arts, mathematics, and/or science and technology/engineering; incorporate engaging, hands-on, and relevant curriculum that addresses the aforementioned gaps in students' knowledge and skills; and use services and strategies that have proven results or a solid rationale for likelihood of success, then programs will move closer towards meeting the goal noted above.
|Priorities: ||The mission of the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (Department) is to strengthen the Commonwealth's public education system so that every student is prepared to succeed in postsecondary education, compete in the global economy, and understand the rights and responsibilities of American citizens, and in so doing, to close all proficiency gaps.|
Academic Support grant programs serve to strengthen school and district capacity by supporting Department Priorities for increasing student performance and local implementation of the Department's District Standards and Indicators .
The five key priorities that the Department has identified for increasing student performance statewide include: preparing students for college and career; strengthening curriculum and instruction; improving educator effectiveness; using data effectively to support student achievement; and turning around our lowest performing schools. This grant program is intended to support all five (where applicable).
The Department's theory of action is that if state interventions are concentrated on ensuring that the necessary district systems are in place and are focused on establishing and sustaining the Conditions for School Effectiveness in each school, substantial gains in student performance will result.
The following six of the eleven Conditions for School Effectiveness are most likely to be supported by Academic Support programming (where applicable): effective district systems for school support and intervention (I), aligned curriculum (III), effective instruction (IV), tiered instruction and adequate learning time (VIII), students' social, emotional, and health needs (IX), and family-school engagement (X).
In order to achieve the Academic Support Allocation Grant program's goal, noted in the Purpose section above, strategic priorities for this grant program include the following:
- Funding priority is given to districts with a high percentage of students who have not yet met the Competency Determination required for high school graduation.
- Programs should give priority to serving students in these categories:
- students from the classes of 2003-2013 (post 12th graders) who have not yet met the Competency Determination required for high school graduation;
- students in the classes of 2014-2018 (grades 8-12) who have scored at the Warning/Failing level on their most recent MCAS test(s) in English Language Arts, Mathematics, and/or Science and Technology/Engineering; and
- students in the classes of 2014-2018 (grades 8-12) who are new to the district and have not taken MCAS but whose academic history and assessments would indicate that additional support services are needed in order to gain the skills and knowledge to pass the 10th grade MCAS tests required for graduation. (This documentation must be available if requested.)
- Programs may also serve students in the classes of 2016-2018 (grades 8-10) who have scored at the Needs Improvement performance level on their most recent MCAS in English Language Arts and Mathematics.
- Programs may offer instruction during the school day, before school, after school, weekends, and during school vacations.
- Programs must ensure that services are available to students with disabilities.
- School districts must provide annual written notice to former students who have not yet earned their Competency Determination of the availability of post-high school academic support programs. Districts must also encourage these students to participate in such programs. See the Additional Information section below for more details.
|Eligibility: ||Public school districts; charter schools; approved private special education schools; and collaboratives are eligible to apply for funds if they serve high school students who have scored at the Warning/Failing and/or Needs Improvement levels on their most recent English Language Arts and/or Mathematics MCAS tests, subsequent retests, and/or at the Warning/Failing level on their most recent Science and Technology/Engineering MCAS.|
See the Funding section below for details on eligibility amounts. A list of eligible entities and their allocation amounts will be posted after the state budget is passed (likely in early July) to: FY14 Academic Support Allocation Grant Amounts FC 632/625 . Subject to funding appropriation, allocations are expected to be comparable to fiscal year 2013 amounts.
|Intent to Apply: ||ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENT: By Friday, October 4, 2013, a written intent to apply for School Year and/or Summer funding must be submitted in order to be able to reserve fiscal year 2014 Fund Code: 632 and/or Fund Code: 625 allocation amounts. Submission of a written intent to apply reserves the funds but does not obligate the entity to apply for the funding. However, entities that do not file intent for funds by October 4, 2013 may lose eligibility to be allocated those funds.|
No written intent is required for School Year (Fund Code: 632) applications submitted by October 4, 2013, as the actual application will serve as the written intent.
Applicants are encouraged to use the online form* to indicate intent to apply for Fund Code: 632 and/or Fund Code: 625. Applicants may also send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the following statement (or a similar one):
(Insert name of district/school/collaborative) DOES__ DOES NOT ___ (check one) intend to submit an fiscal year 2014 application for one or both of the following Academic Support Allocation grants: Fund Code: 632 (School Year) and/or Fund Code: 625 (Summer).
|Funding: ||These services are to supplement currently funded local, state, and federal programs. Individual grant awards are based on a formula that incorporates MCAS scores and fiscal year 2013 funding allocations. Funds are awarded if applicants meet the requirements of the Funding Opportunity's Request for Proposals (RFP). The amount of funds for which an applicant may apply will be included in a memorandum sent to the Superintendents, Leaders, and Directors of those eligible entities. Any entity wishing to be mailed a copy of the RFP and associated documents may send a request via email to email@example.com. As noted in the Eligibility section, a list of allocation amounts will be posted after the state budget is passed in early July to: FY14 Academic Support Allocation Grant Amounts FC 632/625 . Subject to funding appropriation, allocations are expected to be comparable to fiscal year 2013 amounts.|
TO OPERATE A FISCAL YEAR 2014 (9/1/2013-6/30/2014) SCHOOL YEAR PROGRAM (FUND CODE: 632)
Submit a grant application that includes all of the forms listed in the Required Forms section. Applications will be reviewed and approved in accordance with the tentative start dates checked on the applications. All funds awarded under Fund Code: 632 must be expended by June 30, 2014.
NOTE: Each year, some districts find that after the program begins it is prudent to increase or decrease the total amount they receive for School Year programs (resulting in less or more money for a subsequent Summer program). In these cases, an amendment to increase or decrease School Year (Fund Code: 632) funding amounts must be received by the Department no later than Friday, April 4, 2014.
Any amendment to decrease School Year funding amounts may not be for an amount greater than the balance not yet received/requested by the grant recipient. For example, a district approved for a $60,000 grant that has received $45,000 by March may submit an amendment in April to decrease the School Year grant amount by up to $15,000.
The release of funds is contingent upon the submission of all required fiscal year 2013 program data and narrative evaluations.
REMINDER: Grant recipients may expend funds as of the date the grant is entered as approved into the Grants Management system at the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (Department). Details may be found at: Grants for Schools: Getting Them and Using Them, A Procedural Manual.
Grants are reviewed on an ongoing basis. Districts should submit grants a minimum of 15 business days prior to the proposed start of the program to allow sufficient time for review, resolution of issues, and processing in order to comply with the state finance regulation 815 CMR 2:00, section 2.05, (4)(b). Programs are not permitted to expend funds on programs until program approval.
TO OPERATE A SUMMER 2014 (JULY/AUGUST 2014) PROGRAM (FUND CODE: 625)
Submit a grant application that includes all of the forms listed in the Required Forms section.
All funds awarded under Fund Code: 625 must be expended between July 1, 2014 and August 31, 2014. Any expenses related to pre-program professional development/planning or delivery of supplies prior to July 1, 2014 must be budgeted as part of the Fund Code: 632 (School Year) grant.
|Fund Use: ||
If a grantee serves significantly fewer students than proposed in the grant application, the Department may request the return of such funds or withhold an appropriate amount of funds not yet paid. If a grantee provides services to students who do not meet the eligibility requirements of this grant program, this will be considered misuse of funds and the Department will require that the grantee return the funding.
- Funds must be used to extend student learning time in English language arts (ELA), mathematics, and/or science and technology/engineering by expanding successful programs or initiating new direct services.
- Services provided for students must be in one or of more the subject matter(s) that make(s) them eligible for the services.
- These services must be for students meeting eligibility requirements described above in this RFP's Priorities section (#2-3).
- Funds must be used for the academic portions of programs and focus on the acquisition of skills in English language arts, mathematics, and/or science and technology/engineering needed for students to earn their Competency Determination.
- Funds may be used for activities that enhance and support student learning, which may include, but are not limited to:
- integrated tutoring and mentoring programs;
- supplemental web-based and software tutorial programs that are diagnostic and prescriptive;
- weekend and school vacation programs focused on academic support in English language arts, mathematics, and/or science and technology/engineering;
- the English language arts, mathematics, and/or science and technology/engineering components of comprehensive after-school programs;
- the academic support/remediation component of summer programs;
- costs related to removing barriers to participation and learning, including non-monetary incentives for students as well as services that address logistical and/or behavioral health issues;
- college and career readiness activities;
- service-learning projects;
- work-based learning activities;
- high school transition support; and
- counseling programs and services to educate parents and high school students on post 12th grade remediation options.
- Not more than 25 percent of the total amount of funding available to the district may be budgeted for supplies, licenses related to computer software (line 8 - memberships/subscriptions), and any instructional/non-instructional equipment costing more than $5,000 or having a useful life of less than one year.
- Not more than 15 percent of the total amount to the district may be used for program coordination costs (stipends for a program coordinator, bookkeeper, secretary, evaluator, etc.). Programs must supplement currently funded local, state, and federal programs at the school or district.
- Under no circumstances may students be charged money to enroll or attend the Academic Support programs. This includes refundable registration fees.
|Project Duration: ||
Fund Code: 632 (School Year Program)|
Upon Approval (not earlier than 9/1/2013) - 6/30/2014
Fund Code: 625 (Summer Program):
7/1/2014 - 8/31/2014
|Program Unit: ||Learning Supports and Early Learning (OLSEL)|
|Contact: || Contact any Academic Support Liaison via firstname.lastname@example.org or 781-338-3010.|
|Date Due: ||Districts must submit separate applications for Fund Code: 632 (School Year program) and Fund Code: 625 (Summer program). |
For School Year Programs (Fund Code: 632)
Submit grants at least 15 business days prior to the proposed start of the program, in order to allow sufficient time for review, resolution of issues, and processing in order to comply with the state finance regulation 815 CMR 2:00, section 2.05, (4)(b).
For Summer Programs (Fund Code: 625)
- At the latest: Tuesday, March 4, 2014 for a School Year program (ends June 30, 2014).
- At the latest: Friday, April 4, 2014 for a Summer program (July 1 - August 31, 2014).
|Required Forms: || Districts must submit separate applications, signature pages, budget pages, and budget narratives for Fund Code: 632 (School Year program) and Fund Code: 625 (Summer program).
- If applicable, School Year Program (Fund Code: 632) Part I - General: Program Unit Signature Page (Standard Contract Form and Application for Program Grants)
- If applicable, Summer Program (Fund Code: 625) Part I - General: Program Unit Signature Page (Standard Contract Form and Application for Program Grants)
- Part II Workbook - Budget (II-A) and Budget Narrative (II-B)*
(Print and mail with the proposal all four budget and budget narrative pages. See important opening instructions at the bottom of this section.)*
- Part III - Required Program Information
- Assurances Document (Required only for programs proposing to serve students in the classes of 2016-2018.)
*Note: The Budget and Budget Narrative Workbook is a Microsoft Excel file which includes macros that enable the workbook to compute totals and summary tables.
For Microsoft Office 2000/2003, you may need to change the security setting in Excel before opening the file. In Excel, click 'Tools', 'Macro', and then 'Security'. When the dialog box appears, change the security setting to 'Medium' and then click 'OK'. You can now open the budget file.
For Microsoft Office 2007, you must save the workbook as an earlier version of Excel (.xls not .xlsx).
|Additional Information: ||
- Budget Detail - Description of Line Item Information
- Applicants Must Submit a Written Intent to Apply by October 4, 2013 to Reserve Funds (See Intent to Apply section above for details.)
- Narrative Evaluations
Funded programs are required to submit a narrative report on the overall effectiveness of the program, using the Department's Narrative Evaluation Guidelines, which will be posted in the fall of 2013 to the Academic Support Fund Code: 632/625 webpage. Reports are due July 31, 2014 for School Year programs and September 30, 2014 for Summer programs.
- General Guidelines - for Academic Support Allocation Grant Programs
- District/Vendor Guidelines - for Use of Academic Support Funds
- Required Student Data Submissions
Individual Student Data Information is required to be submitted through the Department's Security Portal. Due dates are July 31, 2014 for School Year programs and September 30, 2014 for Summer programs. Details and instructions will be provided by the Department to all grant recipients and will be posted to the Academic Support Data Collection webpage.
- Professional Development/Technical Assistance Sessions
Grantees are expected to have personnel (coordinators, data entry staff, instructors, etc.) attend appropriate Academic Support professional development workshops and data training sessions. We welcome your input and feedback on the workshops. A schedule of sessions will be sent to grantees and posted on the Department's Academic Support webpage.
- Annual Written Notice to Former Students
All school districts must provide annual written notice to their former students who have not yet earned their Competency Determination (and who have not transferred to another school) in order to:
The written notice shall be sent annually by first class mail to the last known addresses of those students. The district is obligated to send annual written notice to a student's last known address for a period of two years from the date the student left high school in the district. Districts are strongly encouraged to use additional successful recruitment strategies that extend beyond the minimum requirement to solicit participation.
- inform those students of the availability of publicly funded post-high school remediation programs aimed at helping them satisfy the graduation requirement; and
- encourage them to participate in those programs.
|Submission Instructions: || Submit two (2) sets, each with an original signature of the Superintendent/Executive Director. |
Donna Pisaturo, Grants Specialist
Learning Supports and Early Learning (OLSEL)
Massachusetts Department of
Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street
Malden, MA 02148-4906