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Grants and Other Financial Assistance Programs: FY2017

Supplementary Support to School Districts with High Concentrations of At-Risk Students: MassGrad Promising Practices Implementation Grant
Fund Code: 320

Purpose: The purpose of this federally-funded continuation grant opportunity is to provide supplementary support to school districts with high concentrations of students at-risk for not graduating from high school. Funds may be used for programming at the high school and/or middle school levels.

Priorities: The priority of this grant is to provide at-risk students in grades 6-12 with a variety of research-based, supplementary supports that will reduce the number of students dropping out of school and ultimately increase high school graduation rates.

This grant program also supports implementation of Massachusetts' District Standards and Indicators Download Word Document and the state's high priority strategies Download PDF Document  Download Word Document for increasing student achievement. In so doing the program serves to strengthen the capacity of school districts to educate the Commonwealth's neediest children.

Specifically, this grant program may be used in support of the following District Standards (and Indicators): Curriculum and Instruction (sufficient instructional time); Assessment (data-based decision-making, student assessment); and Student Support (academic support, access and equity, educational continuity and student participation, services and partnerships to support learning).

In addition, this grant program is intended to support the state's five high priority strategies for increasing student achievement: 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.

Grant applicants must select a least one research-based strategy area in which to focus their implementation activities. The research-based strategy options included in this grant are:
  • Strategy 1: Flexible pathways to meet a range of student needs

  • Strategy 2: Adult advocates for student support

  • Strategy 3: Positive school climate and socio-emotional systems of support

  • Strategy 4: Contextual learning opportunities

  • Strategy 5: Expansion of the school year

Grant recipients will be expected to participate in the spring Dropout Prevention and Re-engagement Work Group Meeting (March 29, 2017).

Eligibility: This grant opportunity is open to school districts that implemented a FC320 grant in FY16 and returned more than $1,000. A list of eligible districts is available under Additional Information.
Funding: Approximately $21,000 is available and will be distributed based on fund return amounts.
Fund Use: Funds can be used by school districts and schools for costs associated with the implementation of research-based programming targeted to students at-risk of dropping out of school. Allowable uses include, but are not limited to, the following:
  • Stipends for newly hired specialists, such as dropout prevention specialists, graduation coaches, or dropout recovery coaches, to work during or after school with at-risk students;

  • Consultant fees associated with programming;

  • Counseling services for at-risk students not already provided by a school or district;

  • Supplies and materials associated with programming (see notes below);

  • Incentives, including out-of-school nutrition and/or health-related fees, such as low-cost or group memberships to community-based organizations working specifically with at-risk students; and

  • Other costs related to creative and effective programs and initiatives addressing one or more of the risk factors exhibited by students in danger of dropping out of school or disrupting the school environment.

Additional Notes:
  • All funds must be used to supplement, not supplant, the use of local funds in meeting the needs of at-risk youth.

Snacks and food for staff and students are prohibited by this grant, unless specifically recommended as part of an intervention strategy and also conform to the State's guidelines on healthy nutrition. See 105 CMR: Department of Public Health section 225.100: General Nutrition Standards for Public Schools (see Additional Information).

Project Duration: Upon approval - 6/30/2017
Program Unit: Office of College, Career, and Technical Education
Contacts: Lisa Harney
Phone Number: (781) 338-3903
Date Due: Monday, February 27, 2017
Proposals must be postmarked and emailed by 5:00 p.m. on the date due.

Required Forms:
Download Word Document
Part I — General — Program Unit Signature Page
Download Excel Document
Part II Workbook — Budget (II-A) and Budget Narrative (II-B)
This four-page budget and budget narrative workbook Must be submitted with all School Year and all Summer program applications.
Additional Information:
Download Word Document
Eligibility List
Download PDF Document
Nutrition Standards

Submission Instructions: Submit one (1) electronic copy of all materials, including the original signature page (in PDF format) to: Carrie Harrington.

Submit one (1) set with an original signature of the Superintendent/Executive Director. Mail to:

Carrie Harrington
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street
Malden, MA 02148-4906


Last Updated: February 8, 2017
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