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Grants and Other Financial Assistance Programs: FY2018

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

Purpose: The purpose of this federally-funded competitive grant opportunity is to provide supplementary support to school districts with high concentrations of students at-risk for not graduating from high school. These students may: be expectant or parenting teen, have drug or alcohol addictions, have current or previous contact with the courts or juvenile justice system, be at least one year behind expected grade level for the age of the individual, have limited English proficiency; be a gang member, be a former dropout, and/or have high absenteeism or chronic truancy.

Priorities: The priority of this grant is to provide at-risk students in grades 7-12 as identified in the Early Warning Indicator System (EWIS) with innovative programming to meet the needs of the population and reduce the number of students dropping out of school and ultimately increase high school graduation rates.

This grant program supports implementation of Massachusetts' District Standards and Indicators Download PDF Document, specifically: 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).

This grant program supports the Department's Strategic Plan Download Word Document that identifies five core strategies for Success After High School:
  • Strengthen Standards, Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment
  • Promote Educator Development
  • Turn Around our Lowest Performing Schools
  • Use Data and Technology to Drive Instruction and Learning
  • Support Students Social, Emotional and Health
Grant applicants must select one to three research-based strategy areas in which to focus their implementation activities. The research-based strategy options included in this grant are:
  • Strategy 1: Alternative Pathways
  • Strategy 2: Adult advocates for student support
  • Strategy 3: Contextual learning opportunities
  • Strategy 4: Expansion of the school year
  • Strategy 5: Implementation of Individual Learning Plans (ILPs)
In addition, all grant applications must directly address the social, emotional and health needs of the at-risk population(s) they will serve

Details on the strategy areas are available in the Research-Based Strategies for Dropout Prevention and Re-Engagement document provided under "Additional Information."

Eligibility: This grant opportunity is open to school districts whose dropout rate is 1.9% or higher and has a dropout count of 20 or more. Eligibility list can be found in "Additional Information." below.

Funding Type: Federal CFDA 84.013A
Title I At-Risk Youth funds

Funding: There is approximately $897,000 in available funds. Districts may request up to $52,000.

Funding is contingent upon availability. All dollar amounts listed are estimated/approximate and are subject to change. If more funding is to become available it will be distributed under the same guideline as listed in the initial RFP document.

Fund Use: Funds can be used by school districts 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, college and career planning specialists; graduation coaches, or dropout recovery coaches, to work during or after school with at-risk students;
  • Consultant fees associated with programming;
  • Counseling services not provided by the school or district for at-risk students;
  • Supplies and materials associated with programming (see notes below);
  • 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:
  • Grant funds may not be used for the purchase of technology - hardware or software; however, "seats" for online credit recovery programs are allowable but may not exceed 10% of the grant total.
  • 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
Grant funds may not be used for programs exclusively serving students with disabilities or to supplant existing alternative education programs

Project Duration: 10/1/17 - 8/31/18
Program Unit: Office of College Career and Technical Education
Contacts: Lisa Harney
Phone Number: (781) 338-3903
Date Due: Friday September 29, 2017

Proposals must be received at the Department by 5:00 p.m. on the date due.

Required Forms:
Download Word Document
Part I - General - Program Unit Signature Page - (Standard Contract Form and Application for Program Grants)
Download Excel Document
Part II - Budget Detail Pages (Include both pages.)
Download Word Document
Part III - Required Program Information
Additional Information:
Download Word Document
Research-Based Strategies for Dropout Prevention and Re-Engagement
Download Excel Document
Eligibility List
Submission Instructions: Email complete proposal in PDF format to: Carrie Harrington by 5PM on September 29th.

Awarded Recipients: Upon award, recipients will be required to enter the approved budget and Part I in EdGrants. Once selected, recipients will be contacted with further instructions on the process.

Last Updated: August 21, 2017
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