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Grants and Other Financial Assistance Programs: FY2017

Focus on Early Literacy
Fund Code: 734


Purpose: The purpose of the continuation of the Focus on Early Literacy grant is to provide funding to participating Educational Collaboratives as defined in (M.G.L. c.40 §45) and their partner districts to cultivate high-quality learning and literacy environments for early education students in support of the statewide goal of improving literacy kindergarten through grade 3.

Priorities: The priorities promote comprehensive, developmentally-appropriate approaches to early literacy; productive collaboration between Educational Collaboratives and districts; implementation of research-based practices and structures for center-based learning, defined as; a response to how young children think and learn independently, collaboratively and successfully through open-ended and purposeful, hands-on, active learning that engages children of all levels in thinking, problem solving, decision-making and choice. The priority is to fund educators in Level 3, 4 and 5 districts and schools that have shown progress in meeting this goal since the inception of the grant in FY15 and FY16.
The practices and structures of center-based learning align to the 2011 ELA Frameworks, the Elements of High Quality Kindergarten Download PDF Document  Download MS WORD Document and the Five Principles of Early Literacy and Learning, which include:
  1. A strong culture of community spirit exists in the classroom.
  2. Each student is empowered to learn and work with others, and has opportunities for choice and authentic voice in their learning.
  3. Foundational literacy practices are intentionally interwoven within authentic, meaningful contexts.
  4. Each student actively engages in meaningful ways to understand, retain, and integrate new learning.
  5. Each student's progress in literacy skills, concepts and strategies is monitored and adjusted so that instructional decisions are timely, and appropriately accommodate student differences and needs.

Eligibility:
  • The five Educational Collaboratives: Collaborative for Educational Services (CES), Collaborative for Regional Education Services and Training (CREST), FLACC, North River Collaborative and Shore Collaborative, that received funding under Fund Code 734a 734b during FY16 are eligible for continuation in FY17.
  • Districts that made a four-year commitment in FY16 are eligible for funding for the second or third year of implementation in FY17. Eligible districts include: Abington, Avon, Bellingham, Cambridge, Haverhill, Holyoke, Lowell, Malden, Mashpee, Oxford, Rockland, Wareham.
  • Collaboratives must continue to designate an Early Literacy Specialist for the project -- a staff member or a consultant with expertise in early literacy and/or early childhood or elementary education.
  • Each participating district must appoint a district coordinator to support the project and serve as the point person for the Educational Collaborative.
  • Collaboratives and participating districts agree to cooperate with the evaluation of the project (funded by ESE).
Funding: This project is funded from state appropriation 7010-0033 Literacy Programs.
  • Final amount of funding per collaborative will be determined during final review of the grant.
  • Five Educational Collaboratives, one in each region, were selected for funding on a competitive basis in FY15 and FY16.
  • In order to plan the grant submission, eligible districts who will be increasing the number of participating kindergarten teachers must submit their intention, as well as, the number of additional kindergarten teachers and the total number of participating teachers (including the additional teachers) by August 31, 2016.
  • Stipends, substitutes, and travel may be paid/reimbursed for teachers and administrators from participating Level 3, 4 and 5 school districts.
  • Subject to funding availability and programmatic vision, collaboratives may apply for continuation grants in subsequent fiscal years.
Fund Use:
  • Funds in this continuation grant must be used for payment for presenters at the Literacy Institutes, professional development and technical assistance (place this expenditure on Line 5: Contractual Services, on Part II, Budget Detail).
  • Collaboratives may charge indirect costs up to their approved rate or 9%, whatever is less. You can find or apply for your indirect cost rate.
  • Direct costs paid by the Collaborative should be detailed on the budget worksheet. (place on Line 1);
  • Collaboratives are expected to procure adequate space for the three networking meetings in their regions in FY 17;
  • Compensation for the collaboratives' Early Literacy Specialist(s) (on Line 1 for staff or Line 5 for a consultant) for:
    • Three days of intensive training provided by BPS staff;
    • Three days of professional development at the Statewide Literacy Institutes;
    • Three days of co-facilitation of three regional meetings;
    • Planning/debriefing/administrative consulting;
    • Monthly planning meetings facilitated by ESE Literacy staff;
    • Facilitation of district/school based planning and implementation meetings;
    • Travel reimbursement.

  • Materials:
    • Kindergarten teachers/classrooms that did not received materials in FY16 that support center-based learning will receive $2,000 per teacher/classroom in FY17.
    • Kindergarten classrooms that received funding for materials in FY15 or FY16 are not eligible for funding of additional materials.
    • Up to $500 per first and second grade classroom for materials that support center-based learning (see above for definition of "center-based learning.").

  • Reimbursements for districts that made a four-year commitment to participate in the grant to reimburse for costs of: Honoraria, substitutes, and travel for professional development:
    • Kindergarten teachers who did not receive training from BPS in January and April, must attend three full days of intensive training in the 2016-2017 school year provided by BPS staff, focusing on key strategies and practices to be implemented in kindergarten classrooms;
    • Administrators and K-Grade 2 teachers will attend three full day Statewide Literacy Institutes and three half day regional networking meetings;
    • Facilitation of district/school based planning and implementation meetings by the Early Literacy Specialists.
Project Duration: Upon approval through 6/30/2017
Program Unit: Instructional Support, Office of Literacy and Humanities
Contacts: Lauren McBride
lmcbride@doe.mass.edu
Phone Number: (781) 338-6242 (office)
(781) 605-4957 (cell)
Date Due: Friday, September 16, 2016
Proposals must be received at the Department by 5:00 p.m. on the date due.

Required Forms:
Download PDF document  Download MS WORD Document
Part I — General — Program Unit Signature Page (Standard Contract Form and Application for Program Grants)
Download MS EXCEL Document
Part II — Budget Detail Pages (include both pages; include daily or hourly rates, numbers of staff, etc.)
Download PDF document  Download MS WORD document
Part III — Required Program Information
Download PDF document  Download MS WORD document
Part IV — Assurance from Participating Districts
Download PDF document  Download MS WORD document
Part V — Assurance from Participating Schools

Additional Information:
Download PDF Document  Download MS WORD Document
Fund Code 734 Focus on Early Literacy Review Score Sheet

Subject to appropriation:

For FY17, participating schools/districts must:
Fully implement Focus on K2 in full-day kindergarten classrooms in the 2016-17 school year.

For FY17, participating kindergarten teachers:
  • If they have not already done so, attend three full days of intensive training in the fall of FY17.
  • Have a full-school-day schedule in kindergarten.
  • Use the materials identified for the curriculum (and supported by the grant); be prepared to adjust the classroom to support centers, e.g., arts, writing/communication, science, construction.
  • Commit to using common planning time to review observational and other data, and plan instruction.
  • Begin implementation of Early Literacy Practices and routines in grade one and grade two
  • Attend three Literacy Institutes
  • Use materials identified, and supported by the grant to adjust the classroom to support integrated content centers: e.g., literacy, STEM, social sciences, arts.
  • Commit to using common planning time to review observational and other data and plan instruction.
For FY18, participating schools/districts must:
  • Use materials identified, and supported by the grant, to adjust the classroom to support integrated centers: e.g., literacy, STEM, social sciences, arts.
  • Commit to using common planning time to review observational and other data and plan instruction
  • Attend Focus on Early Literacy Meetings
For FY19, participating schools/districts must:
  • Use materials identified, and supported by the grant, to adjust the classroom to support integrated centers: e.g., literacy, STEM, social sciences, arts.
  • Commit to using common planning time to review observational and other data and plan instruction.
  • Attend Focus on Early Literacy Meetings.
Submission Instructions:
  1. Email the workbook, the workbook, application, and related documents through the Security Portal to reading@doe.mass.edu.

All documents submitted electronically must be web accessible. For more information, visit: Preparing an MS OFFICE document for the Web.



Last Updated: August 16, 2016
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